The Importance of Moving
From The Fit Room & Kim Salisbury
I have the awesome opportunity to spend time with many different people throughout my work week. They come to me to get healthy and fit. Some have physical injuries, serious health concerns, rehabilitation instructions from a recent surgery, overweight and obese issues and persistent aches and pains that won’t go away. Some have issues that aren’t as visible and obvious like anxiety, heartache, loneliness, depression, chronic stress and fear. Thankfully I am an expert on movement and I am able to help all of them with one simple basic prescription…….GET MOVING & KEEP MOVING!!!!!!!!!!
Why is it so vital to move?
* Movement helps reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and a host of other diseases
* Movement improves your chances of living longer and living healthier
* Movement helps protect you from developing heart disease and stroke or its precursors, high blood pressure and undesirable blood lipid patterns
* Movement helps protect you from developing certain cancers, including colon and breast cancer, and possibly lung and endometrial (uterine lining) cancer
* Movement helps prevent type 2 diabetes (what was once called adult-onset diabetes) and metabolic syndrome (a constellation of risk factors that increases the chances of developing heart disease and diabetes; read more about simple steps to prevent diabetes)
* Movement helps prevent the insidious loss of bone known as osteoporosis
* Movement reduces the risk of falling and improves cognitive function among older adults
* Movement relieves symptoms of depression and anxiety and improves mood
* Movement prevents weight gain, promotes weight loss (when combined with a lower-calorie diet), and helps keep weight off after weight loss
* Movement improves heart-lung and muscle fitness
* Movement improves sleep
Specifically in relation to the brain……
“Physical activity is crucial to mind and body alike,” said neuroscientist Lise Eliot. “The brain benefits as much as the heart and other muscles from physical activity.”
“We’ve found exercise has broad benefits on cognition, particularly executive functioning, including improvements in attention, working memory and the ability to multitask, “said researcher Charles Hillman, a professor of kinesiology and community health at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
“Atrophy of the hippocampus in later life is generally considered inevitable,’ said Kirk Erickson, professor of psychology at The University of Pittsburgh. “But we’ve shown that even moderate exercise for one year can increase the size of that structure. The brain at that stage remains modifiable.”
My Own Experience
I have experienced with my own body and those of my clients that doing “nothing” does not make you feel better. If you have been active or participated in athletic pursuits throughout your life as you age there are going to be little aches, pains, nagging muscle and joint issues. The absolute worst thing you can do is be sedentary. Yes, sometimes it is uncomfortable to get moving but as you continue to move your body begins to feel better. Moving in multi planes, using multi muscle groups and multi modes of equipment and styles of training is the very best medicine that you could ever give yourself.
I have often been heard saying that exercise for me has been my psychotherapy. My running shoes were my therapist. My sweat was my tears. There is a tremendous mental benefit from getting off the couch, putting on your workout gear and getting sweaty. Many a days I head outside for a run or lay down on my yoga mat with much on my mind and heart and miraculously after an hour of using my muscles, breathing, sweating, and pushing myself outside of my comfort zone I feel calm and ready to take on the world. It does not mean that my problems are solved but my mind frame is balanced and able to cope and strategize about what needs to happen next.
What seems impossible today will one day become your warm up.
Sore? Tired? Out of breath? Sweaty? Good….It’s working!!!
The only bad workout is the one that you didn’t do.
As always BE STRONG! Get outside and move! Please connect with me if I can help with any of your health and fitness needs.
For many years running was my main mode of physicality and workout. Needless to say my hamstrings were tight rubber bands and my lower back health was beginning to feel the impact. Jump a few years ahead and my body and flexibility has completely changed due to my regular practice of yoga. I no longer suffer from tight hamstrings and my back has never felt better. I continue to run occasionally. I work out with weights practicing functional movement and I do Pilates at least once a week. All of the above are equally beneficial to your health and fitness but focusing on improving your flexibility will feel incredible. Being able to move your joints fully will calm aches and pains that you have possibly been feeling for years.
Five Reasons Why Flexibility Matters & How to Improve It
1. Flexibility Improves Your Posture. In order for you to have good posture your muscles and joints have to be able to move freely and easily. The stronger and straighter you stand and sit, the more your muscles, joints and ligaments will be protected. When you are able to move more efficiently because of increased flexibility your body will not get as tired and worn out as it does when it is stiff and restricted.
2. Flexibility Increases Your Relaxation and Stress Reduction. Practicing yoga, stretching or doing other exercises to help you increase your flexibility can help you mentally and physically relax. At The Fit Room we practice a form of yoga called Yin. It consists of deep long stretching poses that are held for extended lengths of time. At the end of the session you feel completely stress free, rested and ready to take on the world. It is truly amazing. Exercise science expert Len Kravitz says, “Some fitness instructors and doctors even consider flexibility exercises, along with overall fitness, as one way to unify your mind, body and spirit.” At The Fit Room we experience this sensation weekly.
3. Flexibility Increases Your Blood Circulation. Efficient circulation throughout the body is important for your cells and organs, and will help you feel healthier overall. The most requested pose at The Fit Room is called Viparita Karani (legs at the wall). Basically we lay on the ground with our legs up on the wall in an L shape. This amazing stretch gets the blood that is stagnate at the base of your legs and feet from sitting and standing all day and moves it throughout the body. Your heart rate and blood pressure is lowered and the amount of blood that runs throughout the muscles and organs is increased.
4. Flexibility Helps You Move Better. When I was suffering from back pain, my discomfort came from overall tight muscles. If you sit at a desk all day your lower back is effected from tight and shortened hip flexors and pulled long and week lower back and gluteal muscles. Our flexibility or lack of it effects every area of our lives. How we get into our car, open cupboards high over our head, bending down to weed our garden or over to load a dishwasher. If your body is inflexible you are most likely suffering from imbalances in the muscles and joints.
5. Flexibility Can Keep You From Getting Hurt. If your joints and muscles are tight you are more prone to injury in all your physical pursuits. If you aren’t able to move freely sudden movements or actions could result in injury or lead to you getting hurt.
At The Fit Room we have multiple options to address your tightness, inflexibility and overall muscle and joint imbalances. From deep stretching classes, yoga, Pilates, Yin and Restorative Yoga you have many choices to change your health and fitness. Contact us today for more information or to register for a class that fits your needs.
Other Exciting News!!! I have just taken on an amazing certification from the Institute of Integrated Nutrition to become a Health Coach. This will be a yearlong experience and I am over the top excited. Stay tuned for much more to come. As the training progresses I will need several “test cases” to work with focusing on living a healthy way of life. Of course this will be completely complimentary and free of charge. If this opportunity is appealing to you please let me know.
As Always....BE STRONG, GET OUTSIDE & MOVE!
Kim is a passionate fitness junkie that is certified in Personal Training, Pilates & Yoga. She thrives on introducing you to your healthy, fit, joyful and amazing self through fitness, life and nutritional counseling.