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16 Reasons to Exercise + Tips

The following facts may provide additional motivation to get moving and I add a few tips for making exercise a habit. We have heard 1000 times that we should get regular exercise. We know we should but, somehow…statistics show that too many are still thinking about it.

The Jan-Feb 2009 AARP Bulletin stated walking 30 minutes a day at a brisk pace can REDUCE:

  1. Your medical bills by over $3,000 a year (based on a normal weight retiree)
  2. Depression symptoms by 47%
  3. Your weight by 1.3 pounds a month—15.6 pounds per year. (MW comment: 1000mg of the amino acid L-carnitine on an empty stomach before you head out delivers fat to the cells to be burned for energy and speeds up results and spares muscle. I use the liquid by Jarrow available at health food stores.)
  4. Bone loss (it is actually halted)

You can also REDUCE your RISK of:

  • Type 2 diabetes by 71%
  • Alzheimer’s Disease by 40%. Recent study.
  • Arthritis by 46%
  • Heart disease by 32%
  • Stroke by 33%
  • Colon cancer by 31%
  • Breast cancer by 18% – a recent study shows exercise boosts effectiveness of cancer treatment.

I’d add to that already astounding list:

  • Increase your HDL (good cholesterol)
  • Increase your energy
  • Get that youthful glow back in your skin
  • Think more clearly
  • Reduce cravings for chocolate (even 15 minutes does that)

But how do you get going and stay regular? Try these tips:

  • Understand that exercise will give you the energy to exercise.
  • Start where you are and build. If you can only make it to the mailbox today, fine. Soon it will be the end of the block. (Check with your doctor if there is any question and don’t make too big a change at once because you might get sick. Adding 10% more a week is a conservative goal.)
  • If you can’t find 30 minutes at one time, 3 bursts of 10 minutes still help a lot. (10 before work, 10 at lunch, 10 after work?)
  • Put yourself on the to-do list. How can you help others if you are sick?
  • Team up with a friend so you can support each other and provide some accountability on lazy days.
  • Be sure to walk with good posture (be tall) and it is a good time to think about how deeply you breathe.
  • And drink plenty of water.

Sitting: The latest research shows that sitting too many hours a day is as dangerous to our health as smoking. Consider a stand up desk (I’m using one right now) and at least fidget.

Okay, walking isn’t entirely free—you do have to replace your walking shoes periodically—but the savings in medical bills will buy a lot of shoes! Bye for now, I’m going for a walk.

Copyright Martie Whittekin 2009 and 2014

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