Possibly the best way to feel great, lose weight and boost metabolism is to get moving. Even a walking regimen to get things going is better than sitting at your computer.
Walking will not only make you feel great inside and out, but will melt the pounds off, give a boost to your metabolism as well as your immune system, bring you closer to nature, and have long lasting benefits on your physical and spiritual health.
Just by adding a movement regimen to your daily routine, you can burn fat and build muscle which speeds up your metabolism and helps you to continue to burn fat even when you’re sleeping.
So if that hasn’t grabbed your attention, read on to find out how you can benefit your mind, body and spirit while losing weight and feel great again.
TAKE STOCK OF YOUR HEALTH
If you are just starting a walking regimen it’s always wise to check with your doctor first to make sure you are physically able to accomplish your mission. Most times and most people are able to start a walking regimen with no problems, but if there is any doubt; check with a physician.
START BY STRETCHING AND BREATHING
Always begin any routine with some kind of deep breathing and stretching, don’t laugh about the breathing. Breathing is a very important part in helping to get the body ready for anything. Not only will this benefit muscles and surrounding tissue,but will get your heart going and primed for action. Make sure to take at least three deep breaths (in through the nose, out through the mouth, counting to five on the in and out). Then stretch out every muscle from top to bottom, breathing with each repetition.
Not only is walking fantastic for your heart (it cuts your risk of heart disease) it’s great for lessening your chances of cancer (all types), even diabetes and strokes. All that by just walking! Walking at a moderate pace for 30-60 minutes is great. But if you’re just starting, even slow walking will burn approximately 100 calories per mile for a 180 pound person. Once you get a routine going you’ll notice that your weight will plateau and after a time the body has adjusted to that movement; it’s because you can only get so far with your weight loss by walking. Increase your walking time and distance as time progresses as walking is a perfect starting place, but once your body has become accustomed to the activity, it will adapt and to lose anymore weight you’ll have to kick it up a notch. But by this time your body will be craving more than just walking and you’ll be loving how your new body feels and how you feel because of it.
ADD RESISTANCE TRAINING
NIA (Neuromuscular Integrative Action) , Yoga and Pilates are perfect candidates for this when you don’t want to have the highly muscled body of a weightlifter or Miss Universe. Resistance training doesn’t have to include dumbells and weight lifting machines. Both Pilates and Yoga offer “core strengthening” by using your own body weight as resistance, and NIA offers fun, dancing and aerobic activity to the meditational workouts. There are so many added benefits of resistance training like; better posture, mood, increased metabolic rate, bone density all while toning and defining the muscles. Yoga, Pilates and NIA also offer wonderful side effects of mental, emotional and spiritual connections to your inner self adding personal growth to the long list of benefits. If you are just not into NIA, Yoga or Pilates, you can always try other types of exercise that will use a lot of oxygen (which burns fat) like swimming, rowing, running, biking, cross-country skiing, tennis, or whatever you enjoy that keeps you moving. Check Resources at the bottom of this article for more information.
TREAT YOUR BODY AS A TEMPLE
Your body is the temple for your soul. It is beautiful with all of it’s imperfections and perfections alike. Make sure to treat yourself in a loving way. Eat beautiful, healthy foods and give yourself time everyday to appreciate the wonders of your human body, mind and spirit. Thank your body for all the wonderful things it does for you. Treat it with respect and compassion.
Don’t forget to HAVE FUN! If you get in a rut or start losing interest in a certain exercise or routine, change it up! Try dancing while making dinner, that will heat things up! The ingredients you need to make a meal are located all over your kitchen, so why not boogie over to the pantry and do a shimmy-shake with your rice, then try some squats to retrieve your pots and pans. Or how about a slide on over to the fridge to grab your gallon of water and lift it above your head and whoo hoo, switch hands! Now you’re getting into it!
Instead of boring same-old, same-old cleaning your house, try lunges and dancing through housework. (I love waltzing, and dancing to classical music when vacuuming, and sometimes I’ll put on a funky groove, or whatever I’m in the mood for to get moving while doing chores). Get creative and have a ball and get your kids, friends and family involved, they’ll love it.
Or if your girlfriend calls, instead of standing or sitting there gabbing, walk around while chatting. Get in some steps while talking and you’ll be surprised at how much movement you can get into a regular conversation. Just try making it fun for yourself and enjoy moving every chance you get.
Try drinking a cup of green tea everyday while practicing positive affirmations. Green Tea has been studied for it’s weight loss and fat burning benefits and even raising metabolism naturally along with many other pluses.
Choose colorful foods and healthy snacks to get you through your day. And make sure to get plenty of sleep. Proper rest can help with stress, weight loss and overall well being.
You’re on your way to a better, happier you, and it will show.
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