Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Purpose of Exercise

I read an article a few days ago that was about things most of us do wrong with diet and exercise. One item really struck home with me and oddly it was directed at a much younger reader, someone in their thirties at most. It said to avoid setting your sites too far in the future. It said so many in their thirties saw exercise as a preventative measure hoping when they reached the fine, ripe age of 58, they would not only be slim and fit but have arms that looked more like Madonna's guns than the large, flabby masses I'm sporting. That part wasn't very inspiring to me but what they said next was. The article said that the most successful and long lasting exercise programs were those that concentrated on the positive effects of exercise in the now. You know what I mean, once you reach the point where your body is releasing those feel good endorphins with each workout. That's what makes you keep going back to the trail, the gym, the track. I may not have been aiming to look like Madonna in twenty years, when we'll both be 79 and I'm almost certain even Madonna won't look like Madonna, but I was disappointed when my weight loss seemed to stall out quickly. I don't think that was the main reason why I stopped exercising but it was a major contributor. So, I plan on hitting the trail again tomorrow and logging at least two miles for the first time in nearly a month and I will try my best to concentrate on how I'm feeling at the time, how alive my body feels when the blood starts pumping, how my mood is lifted afterwards. I will try my darnedest not to spend my walking thoughts calculating how much I think I can lose if I walk so much each day, eat just right. I will make a promise to myself not to weigh myself for at least two weeks after that first morning so that I'm not made overly anxious by the scales fickle fluctuations. And, if at the end of that two weeks, the scale has not gone down or even, heaven forbid, gone up, I will try to count all the benefits exercise has brought to my life instead of the pounds not lost.

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