Witness To Fitness

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I've received a number of comments about my last article, most of which went something like this: "Boy, you sure were tough this week."

Being tough was not my intent. I was only trying to point out some easy ways to save time in the gym during a busy season of the year. So I apologize if I gave anyone the wrong impression.

The truth is, I think time spent on your health and fitness should be fun. You should enjoy exercising, and you should enjoy those you exercise with. Time spent in the gym gives you the chance to improve your physical fitness in a social setting that can help your emotional and social wellness as well.

This added benefit doesn't happen during your 10th repetition. You get this benefit from the between-set interaction you have with the friends you work out with. The gym offers a social climate where everyone can enjoy getting fit together.

So take advantage of it. Get to know those you share your time with. Share a joke, or a funny story ... laugh a bit. All of us need time when we can forget about the stresses of everyday life. (Don't, however, forget to work out.) That being said, I'd like to provide some ideas for keeping fun in your fitness program.

Remember when you were a kid? Playing ball, swimming and running around the playground were fun. You never thought about how many calories you were burning while riding your bike around the block. You were just having fun.

Although we might not all agree on which activities are fun, nearly all of us can find a physically challenging activity that we enjoy.

Jumping rope might not sound fun to you, but taking a country western dance class might. Jumping your bike over mud puddles in the rain may be too ambitious, but you might find that rowing a boat around the lake is a fun and rewarding way to spend a Saturday afternoon. If you'd really like to put some fun back into your fitness routine try the following:

Plan a trip and an associated activity to a scenic spot where you will be motivated to be more active than usual.

Involve your family and friends in an activity.

Go for a hike and explore some of our beautiful countryside.

Try a bike ride around the park.

Do something new.

Do something old. If you took dance classes when you were young, maybe it is time to try it again.

Play a game of Frisbee.

Play hopscotch with your kids.

Play anything with your kids.

Moving your body and staying active feels good when you are having fun. I think you also will find that if you are enjoying yourself, you'll approach your fitness program with more energy and enthusiasm. Your health is a serious thing, but don't always take it so seriously.

I hope all of you have a great holiday season. I look forward to talking with you all again next year.

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