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Family Living Focus: Building up the benefits of physical activity

Once you start exercising and become more physically active, you’ll begin to see results in just a

few weeks. You’ll feel stronger and more energetic. You’ll notice that you can do things easier, faster, or for longer than before. This tells you that your body is getting used to a higher level of activity. Now is the time to build on those benefits by doing more.

Make it happen.

If you are able, do your current activities longer, farther, or harder.

When you can easily lift a weight ten times, add repetitions or use a heavier weight.

Add ten minutes to your daily walk.

If you swim half a mile, build up to three-quarters of a mile.

Increase the number of days you go to the gym.

Make it fun.

Try some new activities to keep your interest alive.

Sign up for dance lessons.

Organize your friends to go bowling together once a week.

Join a water aerobics class.

Spend more time tending to your garden.

Sign-up for yoga or tai chi classes to increase your flexibility and balance.

Be sure to congratulate yourself for your efforts. You’ve made great progress, and you’re ready for more!

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Information adapted from article by Go4Life National Institute on Aging a division of the National Institute of Health, United States Department of Health and Human Services.

If you would like more information on “Building Up the Benefits of Physical Activity” contact Gail Gilman, Family Life Consultant, M.Ed., C.F.C.S. and Professor Emeritus University of Minnesota at waldn001@umn.edu. Be sure to watch for more Family Living Focus™ information in next week’s paper.

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