Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Exercise and Vegetables - Your Best Friends?

Exercise is like vegetables in many ways.  Both are good for you and something mom wanted you to have every day.  They each make it easier for you to achieve and maintain a healthy weight and avoid countless chronic diseases.  So why do we resist them so much?

From my coaching experience, I’ve found that many people have narrow views of both exercise and vegetables.  They’ve disliked them for years, usually due to negative experiences somewhere along the line.  Perhaps well-meaning mom overcooked vegetables, didn’t offer much variety, or couldn’t afford to serve them fresh to your large family.  (The only fresh vegetables I had when I was really young were in a salad made with iceberg lettuce.)  Maybe the P.E. teacher embarrassed you in front of the class (mine did) or you were always the last kid chosen for the team (me again!)  If you avoid vegetables, exercise or both, take a moment to trace your feelings back to their origin.  Don’t tell me you just don’t like them, because they’re both too varied and offer too many options for such a general statement to be accurate.

Exercise and vegetables really are your best friends, so give them another try!  I’ll look at vegetables next week and start now with exercise.  As I pointed out a couple of weeks ago, there are so many ways to be active today, even if you can’t run, throw, or catch.  Enlist a friend to join you at a Zumba class, or start a walking program and listen to your favorite book on your MP3 player as you stride.  Yard and housework count as activity, as does swimming with the grandchildren.  How about visiting the fitness center where you live? 

Let me know if I can help you.  In the mean time, the 2012 summer Olympics start on July 27.  Let the games motivate you to get moving!

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