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Be Prepared!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

When I was a Boy Scout a whole lotta years ago, their motto was "Be Prepared!" This is a good watchword even now, a whole lotta years later.

You should be sure that you are adequately prepared for each and every one of your undertakings. If you decide to take the summer off and backpack through France, learning French might be a good idea!

If you are making a gift for someone to use in a religious ceremony, some knowledge of that religion might be extremely helpful. What is right in our culture is completely wrong in others. Many Asian cultures for example require that the bride wear red and not white. Giving the bride a white veil would qualify as a major faux pas.

If you are planning on undertaking an exercise program, you should make sure that your body is as willing as your mind and spirit. If you've not been to the doctor in quite a whole, a physical exam would be a good place to start. A personal trainer will probably put you through a simple screening test, heart rate, blood pressure, elevated heart rate and recovery time. These will give you an idea of the level at which you should exercise.

Whatever your endeavor, Be Prepared!

  


Breathe! Take a Deep Breath!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

While this series of Blogs deals with exercise, today's message applies to life as well. Breathe! Take a Deep Breath! This is extremely good advice since people who do not breathe tend not to be very healthy.

When we are stressed, our breathing becomes abnormal or hyper normal. We tend to take quick short breaths or to pant. Neither of these is effective in delivering the needed oxygen to our blood systems, our muscles, and our brains. Almost every exercise class I have ever attended starts and ends with the same movement. "Deep Knee Bend, Deep Breath". This is the intro and the exit. It lets your body know "We are starting to exercise" or "We're finished for today". It also sets the tone that breathing is important.

We have all heard someone counsel in a time of stress, "Stop and take a deep breath". When we get into a stressful situation, there is an adrenaline rush and the "fight or flight" mode kicks in. The body kicks into high gear and everything speeds up. Sometimes this is beneficial but most times it is not. AT these times we need to stop, take a deep breath or take several long slow regular breaths to get the systems to calm down and kick back into gear.

When we are exercising, the same is true. We need to keep a steady supply of oxygenated blood flowing through our veins. If you hold your breath during exercise and then gasp for air, you are creating a situation of feast or famine, oxygen-wise, and this is not the best situation. By breathing regularly, you keep the blood properly oxygenated and the muscles properly supplied with needed oxygen.

In life and in exercise, Breathe! Take a Deep Breath!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROBCURTROSS 5/20/2009 10:08AM

  Many people contract their chests when they inhale and expand it when they exhale. Counter-intuitive, and reduces the amount of air you take in.

Here's how to see if you are making this mistake.

Lie down on the floor on your back. Place a glass on your chest. Watch it while you breathe normally.

If it rises when you are exhaling and falls when you are inhaling, you are breathing incorrectly.

There are a number of exercises singers use to learn how to breathe correctly. Easy to find by Googling, if you breathe incorrectly.

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Breathe! Take a Deep Breath!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

While this series of Blogs deals with exercise, today's message applies to life as well. Breathe! Take a Deep Breath! This is extremely good advice since people who do not breathe tend not to be very healthy.

When we are stressed, our breathing becomes abnormal or hyper normal. We tend to take quick short breaths or to pant. Neither of these is effective in delivering the needed oxygen to our blood systems, our muscles, and our brains. Almost every exercise class I have ever attended starts and ends with the same movement. "Deep Knee Bend, Deep Breath". This is the intro and the exit. It lets your body know "We are starting to exercise" or "We're finished for today". It also sets the tone that breathing is important.

We have all heard someone counsel in a time of stress, "Stop and take a deep breath". When we get into a stressful situation, there is an adrenaline rush and the "fight or flight" mode kicks in. The body kicks into high gear and everything speeds up. Sometimes this is beneficial but most times it is not. AT these times we need to stop, take a deep breath or take several long slow regular breaths to get the systems to calm down and kick back into gear.

When we are exercising, the same is true. We need to keep a steady supply of oxygenated blood flowing through our veins. If you hold your breath during exercise and then gasp for air, you are creating a situation of feast or famine, oxygen-wise, and this is not the best situation. By breathing regularly, you keep the blood properly oxygenated and the muscles properly supplied with needed oxygen.

In life and in exercise, Breathe! Take a Deep Breath!

  


Always Cool Down After You Exercise!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Just as an exercise program works opposing muscle groups, today's topic is the opposite of yesterdays. yesterday the topic was Always Warm Up before Exercise. Today we go to the other end of the workout. Always Cool Down After You Exercise!

Cool down is important. The one thing you do not want to unintentionally do is shock your system. Just as you have to prepare your body for exercise, you have to send it the message that exercise is over, go back to normal.

Cooling down can be as simple as a slow walk, maybe combined with some stretching. During exercise, your body is stressed and seeking oxygen. When cooling down, we get back into the normal routine. Cooling down is especially important if a hot tub, steam room or sauna is a part of your post exercise routine. When you exercise, your body is creating heat and it needs to dissipate this heat as you cool down. If you go directly into the hot environment of the hot tub, steam or sauna, your body cannot effectively dissipate this heat as it need to.

There is no magic formula for cooling down, just take it easy for a few minutes. Do not go directly into rest but engage in slower and smoother movements to allow yourself to return to normal.

Always Cool Down After You Exercise!

  


Always warm up before exercise!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Another in a series of tips. I recently read an article entitled "The Seven Deadly Workout Sins" The article pointed out seven "don'ts". Being a positive sort of guy, I have turned the seven deadly sins inside out and made them positive statements.

Number One: Always warm up before exercise!

It might be that the most important part of any exercise session is the warm up. This is especially true of early morning exercisers but applies to everyone. When the exercise session begins, your muscles have been at rest. Before you start to strain them, you need to stretch them a little bit and get them a little bit flexible. This will help to avoid injury from over stretching a cold muscle. The warm up is a two stage process. First some slow cardio type exercise to get the blood flowing and the muscles warm. This is followed by some gentle stretching to get the muscles used to moving. Following these two steps will make your workout more enjoyable and avoid having enforced down time while you recuperate from a pulled muscle.

The muscle which needs the most warm up attention is the heart. During an exercise session, the various parts of the body are calling for oxygen. The body gets oxygen from the blood which is circulated by the heart. If you fail to properly warm up, your heart will not be ready for the extra work and the result can be injury, exhaustion, or even passing out.

Take a few minutes before you start in earnest and Always warm up before exercise!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROBCURTROSS 5/18/2009 9:42AM

  Warm ups are important, but most exercise plans seem to be aimed at high performance athletes. For basic walkers like myself, just walking, perhaps slowly for a minute or two, but then moving out, makes more sense.

Otherwise, you can spend most of your brief exercise moments warming up and cooling down -- 15 minutes of brisk walking is helpful, and if all you have is 15 minutes to spare before the attendants call your flight for boarding, just walk.

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