Spring rituals. Proms, reunions, weddings…and the prep for summer clothes. Many moons ago, an ad for a popular health club put it this way. “The competition is ready. Are you?” Well in an effort to get you ready, enter the boot camp….
ARE YOU READY..REALLY?
In my initial assessment, one of my first questions for clients is “When is the last time you have worked out–consistently?” Adding the latter term is very telling. This person may have tried to get into the swing of things, only a few days ago. While I’m happy they’re with me and made an early attempt, I need to know what their body has been doing–consistently. If it’s been at rest most of the time, then I realize there’s not only a change in activity level that must take place. There has to be a change in mind. You may believe as I once did. Something’s better than nothing. Well yes and no. True enough, we all have to start somewhere. Yet no one builds a house on a half-finished foundation. It would compromise the structural integrity.
So why begin a program geared towards a finished foundation? The answer–you really shouldn’t.
Last year, I invested in a seminar titled “PUMPED–Building a better brain through exercise and movement.” One of the opening statements confounded me. According to the lecturer, an hour of exercise a day–if you spend the rest of the day sedentary, may do more harm than good. While this sounded shocking at first, when you consider this carefully, it makes sense.
If your daily routine is spent sitting at a desk, your body believes this is its lot. With the exception of kicking it up a notch in the morning, it says “this is my life.” If you decide to really “go hard” one AM, here’s the kicker. At the milder end of possibilities, you will eat more that day–while sitting at your desk. At the opposite end of the spectrum, is a plethora of scenarios–which may or may not play out. Angina pain (pain in chest), joint issues, and rotational injuries name only a few.
The better alternative? I believe in consistency, with slow but steady pace. Again you build a foundation which stands firm. Once that is established, you take it a little further–depending upon time, effort, and progression. Working up a sweat in the morning is great–a great start that is. What about the rest of the day? Can you take a 10 minute walk at lunchtime? Possibly carve out a little more time after work? What about a 10 minute walk, a five-minute jog, and a few yoga stretches to complete your work day? Now you’ve combined fitness with a little relaxation. If you were to add this to your routine, your body would switch modes–from mostly sedentary to mostly active. Risk of injury would decline, while your overall fitness level would improve.
With these ideas in mind, now ask yourself…is boot camp for me? If those orange hot pants are still calling your name, I believe ace bandages, duck tape, and some hospital gowns come in a wide array of colors. Well maybe not the gowns.
All for now. Keep up and keep at it.
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