As I type, the Boston Marathon is well underway. Since 1897, thousands of athletes have trained rigorously in order to compete in the world’s oldest annual marathon race. And it is a site to behold! Last year, I cheered on runners at mile 22. With a few miles to go, some competitors were running, some were walking, and some were even limping.
As I stood there I thought “while this is truly amazing, long distance running is not for me!” And I would imagine that many of you feel the same way. But in the spirit of the marathon, I’d like to send out a message of encouragement and motivation. Let this marathon season ignite a desire to set a new goal or a new challenge for yourself. Our bodies are made to move! And the natural consequences of inactivity are numerous: risk for developing chronic disease increases, muscle tone is lost, flexibility slackens, and our ability to keep up with the rigours of daily life (including children and grandchildren!) diminshes.
For health benefits, exercise at least 30 minutes a day. Those 30 minutes do not have to be continuous but they do need to be designed to get your heart rate up. Make it intentional, make it consistent, and make it something you enjoy. Consider partnering with a buddy for moral support, accountability, and some good conversation (but make sure you are working your bodies more than your mouths).
So here is my challenge to you, make a fitness goal for the coming week. Track it. And see how you do. Trust me, writing it down and tracking it is essential. Here is an example of a “SMART GOAL.” A goal that is Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely.
1.) I will walk with my husband for 30 minutes on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday at 7:00 pm.
Notice the detail. A specific plan is in place and it is very easy to measure whether or not the goal has been accomplished.
Good luck with your fitness challenge and feel free to report back on your successes! If you like what you are reading, forward this blog along to a friend. Create a network of friends and family that are working together for a healthier future.