In It for the Long Haul

Sure, it’s more difficult to get back into an exercise routine after a long layoff–or even start one when you’ve never worked out regularly before. Once working out is a regular part of your life, it’s easy to stay in the habit of keeping fit and healthy. But the battle’s not over. Even the most diehard fitness buffs occasionally fight workout burnout and boredom.

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Why Exercise is the Best Medicine

Between 50 and 70 million Americans suffer from headaches each year. Many of those headache sufferers often turn to medication or retire to a dark room waiting for the pain to go away. However, other headache sufferers are finding relief by taking a proactive approach. Before headaches strike, they engage in aerobic exercise.

Their results are impressive: people who engage in aerobic exercise get fewer headaches, their headaches are less severe, and they have less of a need for serious drug-therapy programs. “People who regularly walk briskly or jog have reported dramatic improvements in their headaches,” declare Dr. Alan M. Rapoport and Dr. Fred D. Sheftell, founders and directors of the New England Center for Headache in Stamford, Connect-icut, and authors of several books about headaches.
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50 Tips to Increase Stamina

Can there really be 50 ways to increase performance in your favorite sport? Twenty-five push-ups a day do not an athelete make, but combine those exercises you do for strength and endurance with a nutritious diet, aerobic conditioning, weight training, and a healthy lifestyle, and you can be at the top of your form-whatever your sport. Consider the suggestions below; you may be in for a few surprises.
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Volkssporting: A Whole New Kind of Walk

If last names had anything to do with predisposing one to a sport, I guess this would be mine. Although swimming, bicycling, snowshoeing, roller skating, ice skating, and cross-country skiing also fall under the “volkssport” heading, walking is the main event, and the majority of volkssporting events are organized walks (the walking segment is sometimes referred to as volksmarching).
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Five More Reasons for Walking

The skeletons in my workout closet are many-an unused athletic club membership, a dusty NordicTrack, a lonely ab-buster. All purchased with the best of intentions. But, alas, they have all fallen to the same fate: while they may have physically challenged me, mentally I was “bored out of my gourd.” Consequently, I became a fitness failure, a workout wannabe.

Then one day my family upset me. Husband, sons, the cat; I can’t remember which one started it, but in the end I decided to take a walk to blow off steam. After 10 minutes I felt better. And after 20 minutes the argument seemed miles away.

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How to Make–and Keep–Healthy New Year’s Resolutions

It’s a new year, and it’s that time again for making resolutions. Most of the popular picks for yearly resolutions are related with health.

Many people are motivated as the New Year begins, yet once again they eagerly set goals and objectives only to be faced with disappointment. Why is it that resolutions fizzle out, and come and go like the fad of the latest pair of jeans?

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How to Get Motivated to Get Moving

I entered adulthood with an image of myself as someone who does not “do” sports. I figured there was a human divide and I was on the side with those who discussed books and foreign films, sipped frothy drinks, and had pale skin in the summer. In my mid-20s, after a few years at the computer, my body started to protest my lifestyle. Headaches and neck pain were frequent, and I sensed my metabolism slowing. I should mention that I wasn’t really inactive, but I was passive. I never grasped the idea that physical fitness was something I could take charge of for myself. As I got older, busier, and less active, I began to envision layers of fat overtaking me in the coming years, and yet I felt helpless to do anything about it.
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Workout Without Equipment

It’s not unusual for people to feel that they can work out only if they have a fully equipped gym with a large assortment of equipment. Nothing could be further from the truth. The only things you need to work out are motivation and determination.

There are basically two parts to a workout–cardiovascular (or aerobics) and strengthening (or toning). Most people are under the impression that aerobic exercise should leave you gasping for air. The reality is that working out aerobically should actually feel quite comfortable. You can work out aerobically without equipment by (in order of difficulty):

  • Walking
  • Hiking
  • RunningIf you are just starting an exercise program, begin by just walking in your neighborhood and try to avoid any hills. As you walk you want to feel a little out of breath and be perspiring moderately (barring high heat and humidity). If you had to describe your level of exertion on a scale of 1 to 10, it should feel like a 6 or 7. Remember that this should feel like a level that you could comfortably sustain for 20 minutes or more.
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