fitness goals

Is Exercise Really Necessary?

Are you wondering if exercise is really necessary?

Did you know that regular exercise boosts brain power, reduces heart disease risk, and lowers cholesterol levels? According to researchers, just one and half hours of physical activity per week can decrease your risk of premature death by over 20 percent, and the risk of diabetes by 39 percent.

An active lifestyle is the key to optimal health. Yet, its benefits are often overlooked.

Why Is Physical Activity Important?

Health experts recommend at least one hour and 15 minutes of intense physical activity each week, two and a half hours of steady state cardio, or a combination of both. More than 80 percent of Americans fail to meet these requirements. Less than five percent engage in 30 minutes of exercise daily.

Only one out of three children is physically active each day. Most kids spend over eight hours a day on front of the TV or the computer.

These numbers may seem shocking, but they reflect the truth. Obesity rates are on the rise mainly because of poor nutrition and lack of exercise. A sedentary lifestyle can increase your risk of stroke, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, type II diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and osteoporosis.

While it’s true that you can get away without exercise, this may affect your health in the long run. Not only you’ll gain weight and lose muscle mass, but also experience memory decline, high cholesterol, decreased range of motion, joint stiffness, and depression.

Regular exercise helps maintain a normal weight, prevents cardiac events, and wards off chronic diseases. It also stimulates the release of feel-good chemicals in your brain, which lifts your mood and improves mental health. Physically active people have a lower risk of breast, colon, endometrial, and lung cancer than those with a sedentary lifestyle.

They also live longer, have stronger bones, and find it easier to stay slim.

What Really Counts as Exercise?

Most people associate exercise with long cardio sessions, jogging, or strength training. Some hate these activities, or simply don’t have access to a gym. Others are too busy to commit themselves to a regular workout plan.

Is Exercise really necessary Yes, but the good news is that you don’t need a gym membership to stay active.realistic fitness goals

With a little planning, you can exercise anytime, anywhere.

Sports activities, such as hiking, swimming, baseball, soccer, tennis, and horseback riding, count as exercise. Push-ups, pull-ups, squats, burpees, jumping jacks, lunges and other body weight moves can replace most gym workouts.

If you don’t have a treadmill, go jogging or walk at a faster pace. Ride your bike around the house instead of using a stationary bike. If you really want to exercise, you’ll find a way to do it.

Regardless of what type of exercise you do, always watch your form.

Prevent injuries. If you lift weights, increase the load gradually. Ask a trainer for advice. Get enough rest and avoid training the same muscle group more than once in 36 hours. When you do cardio, stick to 30-40 minutes of exercise per session. Remember to eat well so that your body receives the nutrients needed for muscle growth and repair. If your goal is to lose weight, maintain a high protein intake and adjust your carbs along the way.

To your health!



Control Stress And Lose Weight

Learn to control stress and lose weight in the process

“Stress is the confusion created when one’s mind overrides the body’s basic desire to choke the living daylights out of some jerk who desperately deserves it” –

– Author Unknown –


Now that I made you smile, here’s the serious stuff about stress and its effects on weight gain.Stress Weight Loss

It’s all about the prehistoric fight-flight response our bodies used as a defense mechanism, hardly needed in our modern world.

While temporary stress- mid- high levels of arousal –is necessary to help us accomplish important tasks, i.e. school exams, job interviews etc, when stressful situations are the order of the day we are in trouble.

Constant fight-flight response triggers excess cortisol production

While cortisol (a stress hormone) is released as part of our defense mechanism it can also promote weight gain. Read more

Full -engaged brain

Mindful Fitness and Exercising

Mindful Fitness Means Engaging Your Mind FirstFull -engaged brain

I have been  asked about the connection between  Body-Mind and nutrition as it relates to physical health and fitness.

Since I place a huge emphasis on nutrition as part of a weight loss plan, supported by weight training, cardio routines, subsequent assessments, progress monitoring, accountability etc…

…the implication is that aerobic conditioning and weight training are independent of Mind-Body fitness as the term traditionally implies (Yoga, Pilates etc)

My answer is that physical fitness has everything to do with the mindful fitness….

The commitment to transform our bodies, the challenge, the discipline, the excitement and the rewards, not to mention the first step we must take to even get a mentor, a support group or a solo adventure into a new journey of health and fitness.

If all that does not engage our minds, I don’t know what does.

From a biological stand point, our brain is always in charge, ready to accept or refuse any new challenges we present it with (at a conscious and subconscious level)

I workout often but as much as love the  energy I get after a hike or gym session , I still must fight the voice in my head that tells me, “not today, you are too busy, you’re running late, you can skip a day or two!”

I know it’s my brain doing its thing…

…And I know it is very good at trying to always get set me  back to the old status-quo, to the familiar, safe and painless state of affairs (i.e,  staying in bed a little longer)

But I also know that my other voice, my conscious mind must win… and win often.

Body-Mind weight management, exercising, fitness, appetite control…

Call it what you want, it’s all in the mind and the brain is king-

Even though many mysteries regarding the workings of the brain are still unresolved, researches have been able to prove this much:

The brain is highly pliable.

That’s what I refer to as mindful fitness…

All things being equal and any physiological deficiencies or imbalances being ruled out, we can re-program our brain to suit out needs, and one of the easiest ways to do it in regards to new habit formation and stick- it- to- tivism, is through repetition and visualization.

Here’s how you start…

Ask yourself  3 questions:

  1. Have you reached that point in your life in which you think some changes are in order?
  2. How bad do you want to achieve those goals?
  3. Are you willing to do what it takes to make them happen?

To your health!

Did you enjoy this article? share it below or feel free to send your comments.

Dig into the science of successful weight loss strategies without the hype.

Join my list for blog updates and more articles like this today!

  Copyright secured by Digiprove © 2011 Luz Laureano