What it Takes to Feel Great!
Health and Fitness Program
With the Olympic games approaching, athletes, sports enthusiasts and even those without any connection to sports will be motivated to start exercise routines! Olympic athletes somehow motivate people to aspire to be disciplined, work hard and show good sportsmanship–regardless of defeat or victory.
Throughout your life, in whatever sport you play, the best game to play is the one that involves life’s actions.
I want to invite you to get started with a health and fitness program, designed specifically for your current lifestyle. If you are already involved in one, congratulations! You are making a valuable investment from which you will benefit for the rest of your life. If for any reason you have put it off due to other priorities in your life, take a chance on yourself! Olympic athletes started their 2012 Olympic training 4 years ago, consisting of a basic conditioning program. They work on things like fixing broken movement patterns and habits that our bodies give way to. Our bodies are not any different; when we fail to maintain our physical health, we suffer the consequences.
Most people need energy for an average of 12-16 hours per day. For that, we should be preparing to function at our optimal level. In addition to the importance of getting 7-8 hours of sleep per night, we should be challenging ourselves to 15-30 minutes of exercise per day! You will certainly notice a difference in how you feel.
A Fitness Program Has 4 Basic Components
- Flexibility: Only stretching out your tight muscles.
- Stability: Keeping proper body alignment while moving your limbs. Strength: Able to move moderate to heavy weight
- Power Explosive Movements: Plyometric jumps, power lifting, 100 and 200 meter sprints.
- Strength Training: If you decide to engage in a strength conditioning program, it is key to assess your present levels of fitness as well as your health and stress levels.
If you have proper levels of flexibility and stability, then you are ready to engage in a strengthening program! However, exercising without the first two components is a recipe for disaster.
It is surely possible for one to be healthy and not fit. What I have noticed is that everything depends on what we perceive as being in good shape. Is it looking muscular with a specific body fat percentage? Is it being able to run at a certain speed for a certain amount of time? Or is it just being able to move throughout the day with minimum discomfort and not suffering from constant illnesses, digestion problems, pain, aches, and blood pressure irregularities?
As I mentioned before, we need to have energy to focus for 12-16 hours per day. A vital component of a health and fitness program requires a balanced food intake throughout the day. Our bodies are taxed as we are bombarded daily with many different stressors, reducing the energy we have, making it difficult to stay focused.
As I see it, achieving success in a health and fitness program requires the individual’s awareness of how he or she reacts food they are consuming. Within 30-45 minutes of your meal, you will receive a clear signal of how your body is reacting to what you have eaten. Whether you feel good or bad depends on the ratios of proteins and carbohydrates that have been consumed.
(To find out the percentages of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins that you should be consuming, find out your metabolic type. Knowing how your metabolism functions is of great benefit as you plan your meals. If you are interested in finding out your metabolic type, contact us at Mind Body Motion.)
Follow the rule of working hard, and resting hard. Perhaps this is the segment where I personally see athletes and people in general make the mistake of training too much and not stopping until it’s too late. Most people will stop only if the pain is too great or when they notice inflammation of injured areas. By then, the damage is done and the athlete must refrain from activity until their body has recovered. I highly recommend that you invest in a simple heart rate monitor so you can keep your levels of intensity to manageable levels for your body. Usually 60-70% of your maximum heart rate is a safe range to maintain while you train, without the risk of causing injuries. Checking your resting heart rate as your wake up in the morning and keeping track of the highs and lows is an effective way to keep your body from getting over trained and over tired.
Find your metabolic type and prepare your meals accordingly to keep your blood sugar at optimal levels throughout the day.
Make an effort to be in bed by 10:30 to ensure your body gets 7-8 hours of sleep per night for optimum muscle repair.
Set realistic goals for yourself and always keep them in sight! Use 4-week phases to assure that you achieve the results you aspire to reach. Most importantly, have fun as you embark on this life-changing journey.
Have a great summer!
Keep on moving
Luis Ponce Sr.