Ok so this one has been building for a while. The source of my frustration is the fact that we are not making MOVING a priority in our lives. Today I am taking you right back to basics in the hope that everyone will see why we need to move and why it really isn’t an option but a necessity. It is vital for your health and will protect your future.
We are animals. We do walk on 2 legs and are highly intelligent but we are still animals. In order for our bodies to work effectively we need to move them and regularly. You just need to look at the host of aches and pains that are now common place as a result of the hours we sit at a desk, hunched over a screen or on the sofa. To maintain our fitness we are told that we should be doing 10,000 steps a day. I know from my own experience that some days this is impossible but I always make sure that over the week I have averaged more than this. Many of my clients have been horrified once they have started wearing an activity tracker at how little activity they do. We really are masters at kidding ourselves.
As we age joints get stiffer and we lose some of our flexibility. It is a proven fact however that if we keep moving and build strength in the surrounding muscles we can keep many of those aches and pains away. Even after surgery for joint replacement you will find yourself back on your feet and moving to rebuild strength and improve function in the joint. For back pain we used to be told to immobilise ourselves and stay there until it eased. The advice now is more about keeping moving and addressing weaknesses.
The reality of inactivity is that you are likely to put on weight. We all have a tendency to do so as we age and lose muscle mass so we are just making it worse. The consequence of carrying extra weight is that there is more pressure on your joints and all your organs. You increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes to name a few. Add to that the fact that being overweight increases your risk of many cancers too.
I often hear that being fat doesn’t mean you won’t get ill and that really fit people still die young of the same conditions so what is the point? I accept that but why would you increase your risk any more than need be? If you are fit and healthy then you are in a much better place to cope with the treatment and to fight whatever is wrong. I certainly got treatment for my underactive thyroid quickly because the Doctor knew that I was fit and healthy with a good diet and understanding of my body. I wasn’t sent away to change my diet or to lose weight – the symptoms were clear and I was treated. I want to know that if I need surgery I will be eligible to have it not told to lose weight and then come back. There are no guarantees but by looking after yourself you will have the best chance possible.
The benefits of moving on mental health have been in the forefront of the news for the last few months. We are all stressed and living pressured lives. If you don’t take any action to relieve this stress then you will eventually get ill. Mental health issues, heart conditions and strokes can all be caused by too much stress, being overweight and being inactive. Stress can cause inflammation in our bodies which can be at the root of many conditions including cancer.
I think it is clear where my frustration is coming from. Moving is a basic need for us all. If we don’t do it we will compromise our quality of life whether through disease, stress or mobility issues. You might be fine now but believe me it all changes rapidly as you age. Don’t wait until you are ill to make time to move. Do it now and you will soon see and feel the benefit. You can find the time if you really try. I work with people of all ages, shapes and sizes. Often they start after health scares or a general concern about what the future will hold if they don’t take some action now. It is never too late. I work with clients who are well into their 70s and are absolutely amazing. Strength and balance can be built. Heart health can be improved. Bone density can be rebuilt. Our bodies are incredible and when we move they repair and rebuild themselves.
My message today is that we all need to move more. This is not about vanity or aesthetics it is about our health and our future. We are all living longer and I for one want to live an active and independent life. The choices that you make each day now directly affect what your future will look like. Please think very carefully about what you really want and where you want to be.
Getting started can be the hardest part and I have my ‘Get Moving’ plan which is specifically designed to help you to do that. I am opening up 4 spaces to start in June. If you would like to find out more please click here. For those of you looking to train at home please see my FitPack plan below.
I would love to hear your comments and if you have any questions then you can email me here.