Thanksgiving is over and Christmas is almost here. These traditional food holidays, along with office parties, family get togethers, traditional feasts and ringing in the new year, are all annual contributors to our ongoing battle of the bulge. In a little over a week, we’ll begin making our new year’s resolutions and, if you are anything like yours truly, getting rid of those extra holiday pounds will be at the top of the resolution list. Finding time in our busy schedules to get the proper amount of excercise can be a real challenge and many of us just don’t have the will power to hit the gym after the children are tucked in or before our daily office commute. One of the best ways to begin your new year is with an excercise plan that can be increased in direct parity with your increasing stamina, as well as one that can be done anywhere, either alone or with family and friends.
One of the most important parts of a balanced excercise routine is walking. Although many avid walkers do so at a brisk pace, a slower walk for a half an hour to an hour at a time will burn fat, add muscle mass and jump start your metabolism, a key factor in weight loss. There are many other tremendous health benefits to be gained as well; regular walking can reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, some types of cancer and is a great way to reduce stress and improve focus and concentration. A research study done by the American Dietetic Association, found that thirty minutes of excercise that was cardiovascular in nature, significantly reduced body fat and cholesterol levels, as well as dramatically reducing health risk factors in study participants with a whopping forty year age range. We are fortunate to be living in a part of the country where parks and walking trails are plentiful and scenic, no matter what time of year, so take advantage of them and be sure to take your camera along to capture all of the natural beauty of your chosen path. Have your friends join you, as well as your family, to maximize your fun. You will need to invest in proper footwear, fitted properly by a professional who can assess the proper shoe for your walking routine, but that is really all you need to embark on an extremely beneficial and entertaining fitness program. Why not seize the opportunity to improve your life and health, as well as the lives and health of others at the same time? Here’s how…
This year, the North Carolina Chapter of the March of Dimes is holding thirty (30) March for Babies fundraising walks throughout the state. There are two in our area on April 30th.; one in the Triangle and one in Greensboro. The March of Dimes fundraising supports community programs on a national basis to help mothers to be have healthy, full term pregnancies, as well as providing research funding for the issues that confront premature babies. The above website links have all of the information you need to get involved. Take a little time and read about the wonderful work this remarkable organization has done and is doing and make one of these charitable walks a part of your new year’s resolutions as well. Involve your friends and family and form a walking team, or just participate. Either way, you’ll be very glad you did.
We wish you and yours the very best of everything in 2011. If you haven’t subscribed yet, why not do so now? I also write a column about Specialty Grocers in our area which includes a lot of local history and some terrific recipes as well. When you subscribe, you’ll be notified whenever a new article is published and it doesn’t cost a thing. You’re going to love foamcage.com, your place for all things local – national, too.