Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Exercise Doesn’t Have To Be Exercise

Ok you are dreading the thought of exercising yourself thin. When most people think about exercise, thoughts of treadmills, the “pick-up joint” health club and “sweating to the oldies” come to mind. In the 1980s Olivia Newton John sang “Let’s Get Physical,” but since then the majority of Americans have said, “Let’s not!” The problem is that exercise needs a makeover, a new image and a catchy slogan. Gardening has one—“Gardening: Everyone Is Digging It!” Maybe that’s why it’s America’s favorite active pastime, second only to watching TV.

But seriously, here’s the point: Exercise doesn’t have to be tedious, monotonous and painful to help you lose weight and be healthier. Just find an activity you like and start doing it. Gardening, by the way, is exercise. So is chopping wood, painting the house and yes, even computer work burns some calories. Remember all activity throughout the day counts toward total calories burned? That’s still true. Twenty minutes on the treadmill is not the only way to burn 200 calories. Twenty minutes of rearranging furniture in your house can do the same thing. 

Exactly how many calories you’ll burn depends on the activity you choose as well as how long and intensely you do it, but here are some examples of how many calories the average 150-pound man would burn for 30 minutes:

•Downhill skiing – 216
•Basketball – 288
•Dancing – 108
•Gardening – 167
•Computer work – 50
•Cooking – 90
•Biking – 288
•Horseback riding – 144
•Interior remodeling – 162

All of these activities can help you maintain a healthy weight and build a strong, lean body (although some will help more than others). If you aren’t sure what to do, try matching an activity to your personality. For example, if you’re a competitive person you might really enjoy a basketball or softball league. Our grandfather loved to grow things and spending countless hours tending to his garden kept him in good shape. As Grandpa once said, “Just figure out what floats your boat and stay with it!”

To read more about proper exercise, transforming your body and life get a copy of the Great Shape-Up Program today from America’s Healthiest Couple, Dan & Jennifer Polimino.

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