Learning About Motion – Diet Day 16

Having successfully completed the first two weeks of my diet I am now ready to begin week three. I am really looking forward to this week because I will now be able to incorporate exercise into the program.

It’s funny, when I was younger I fashioned myself an athlete. From a very early age I was involved in one sport or another. I was always active whether it be running, throwing, hitting, kicking, or swimming. As I got older and heavier I found my level of activity diminish.

Some of that had to do with becoming a father and settling down to provide for my family. Other parts of my life took precedent and I was less active. Add to this the fact that my job became more sedentary requiring me to sit in front of a computer screen for long periods of time and it was no wonder why I was gaining weight.

Every year I would promise myself that I would become more active but the thoughts of going to the gym made me cringe. I didn’t have a good positive image of myself and thought I was too old to make any difference.

As a companion to changing my eating habits, my health coach has given me homework to read about how I can make changes to live a healthier lifestyle. I initially expected this to be how to start exercise but I was surprised to learn that the program instead was teaching simple motion versus devoted exercise routines.

The reading text sounded like something I had first-hand experience with. Sixty percent of people get no regular physical activity. Twenty-five percent get no activity at all. Fifty percent of those who begin an exercise program quit within six months. Within a year of purchase 90 percent of all exercise equipment goes unused.

With those kinds of statistics its no wonder I have failed in maintaining the proper approach to exercise. I have a million and one excuses for not exercising but somehow cannot find a single reason important enough for me to stay focused.

This program attempts to change my way of thinking about physical activity. It doesn’t have to involve going to the gym, using specialized equipment, or even tracking the amount of weight or minutes I exercise each day. Instead they focus on adding regular movement to my daily life.

Every movement we make burns calories. Some movements burn more than other but the important piece is to begin slowly increasing the amount of calories we expend and not increasing the amount we consume.

They talk about simple things such as the number of calories you burn standing versus sitting or how you can add to your movement program by getting up out of your chair even if you don’t do anything other than sitting back down. Walk to the television or to the sink rather than asking someone to bring something because they are already there.

I’ve begun looking at every motion I make on a daily basis and contemplating how I can use this to my advantage buy increasing either the duration or intensity to burn a few more calories. Rather than looking for a parking place close to the entrance I am not looking at each step from the parking lot as another opportunity to burn excess calories.

It’s an interesting way of looking at the world and one I had taken for granted. From this point forward I need to consider what I can do to maximize movement in my life. Every step I take, every move I make needs to work to help me become healthier. It’s a small thing that who knows may make a difference in me living longer.

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