Get Up and Move!

By Rob Dorgan and Steve Bolia

Man in standing yoga pose

"An apple a day keeps the doctor away," but the benefits of simply moving your body outweigh any fruit or vegetable! One of the most important things you can do to maintain or improve your overall health is simply to get up and move. Not only can movement reduce the risk of chronic conditions such as cancer, cardiovascular disease and type II diabetes, but research also suggests that it can slow or even reverse the aging process – now, how about that! Think of movement as medicine - free medicine with almost zero side effects.

All you need to do is get up, get dressed and get out. A simple walk around the neighborhood will help you improve your ability to manage your weight; it will also keep your joints limber and your bones strong. You see, as you move and work, the muscles, the tendons which attach the muscles to the bone create a pulling action (or stress) on the bones where they attach. To adjust to this pulling action on the bone, the body will actual lay down more bone matrix (osteoblasts) so that the bones become stronger to withstand the stress put on them by the pulling tendons.

Movement and any form of exercise can be the easiest and cheapest way to improve your overall health, but for many of us it can be the most difficult thing to begin and/or maintain. What’s your reason? Is it ”My schedule’s too busy right now;” “When I get home after a day at work, all I want to do is relax in front of the TV;” or “I just don’t have the motivation to stick with anything so why begin”? You have to change your mind before you can change your body. It’s never too late to begin to make positive changes in your life.

Health experts recommend that you partake in some form of physical activity at least thirty minutes a day three to five days a week. That’s only 1one and a half to two and a half hours - only about one or two percent of your waking hours weekly!

There are many forms of movement so just choose what's best for you. Are you a walker or runner? Do you prefer yoga or Pilates? What about weight training? How about dancing? And of course our favorite, massage! Yes, even passive movement of the body through massage can be of benefit to your overall health and well-being. Whatever you decide, it is always best to consult with a professional before beginning any new movement routine. You want to be sure you start with activity that matches the current state of your body. As your body gains strength and flexibility you can increase the duration or intensity. Be sensible when starting out. No one wants to get hurt.

So, turn off the TV, put down that soda, push yourself away from the table and get your shoes on darling cause we’re going dancing!

Rob Dorgan and Steve Bolia are both on the staff for Easton Mountain's first Wellness Camp, June 14-18, 2017.  At this Camp, they will cover the many facets of a lifestyle that will lead you to better health.