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Mike Creamer - Indoorance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

          

As we near the end of another year it's a good time to consider whether you are feeling "better off" than you were twelve months ago. Prosperity isn't just about improving your material wealth. What is more important to your personal well-being and quality of life than your physical health? There's a reason we first and foremost wish someone a happy and a healthy New Year.

You may tie your prospects for prosperity in 2013 to people or circumstances beyond your control and each new year brings only two sure things, taxes and another birthday. So if you find yourself feeling older with each passing year the good news is that you are never too old to feel and to be younger next year. Because we do not age chronologically but biologically, and that's something that you alone can control.

From the age of about 40 on, if you don't exercise regularly you get old very quickly. Your daily choice to exercise, or not, has a profound effect on your state of health and well-being today and in the future. Physical activity is an elixir of life that will leave you feeling more energized, more productive, less stressed and possibly happier. According to Chris Crowley, the septuagenarian co-author of the book 'Younger Next Year', "the best piece of advice in the whole book is to lift weights twice a week for the rest of your life".

Life Fitness

For the past few years the buzzword in the fitness industry has been all about "functional fitness". Functional exercise improves your body's ability to carry out the activities of daily living with ease and without fatigue. If you live in an area of New York that was affected by the recent power outages your functional fitness may have been put to the test. Did you find yourself struggling to walk up five or ten flight of stairs to your apartment or tiring after walking twenty or thirty blocks in search of batteries? If you spend more time on your seat than on your feet, avoid steps and curbs, think twice about bending over to pick things up, then you need to do some functional exercise.

Most functional exercise programs emphasize core training to improve balance and stability but it's even more important to strengthen the large locomotor muscles of the lower body. Instead of lying on your back or sitting on an inflated ball, most of the time you should be standing on your feet and supporting your own weight when you lift anything. But the first step is to teach your body to control and balance its own weight.

At separate gatherings over the Thanksgiving holiday I met two middle-age "active" women who each recently had a minor fall that left them both requiring surgery and disabled for many weeks. One with a shattered wrist and the other with a broken shoulder. The surprise was not that neither of these women lifted weights but that their injuries were so severe from a simple accident and their relatively young age. Weight training, properly applied, makes everyday activities easier, reduces your risk of injury, improves your quality of life and will make you stronger and Younger Next Year.

Row Strong

An article in last Sunday's NY Times reported on some recent health studies on the detrimental effects of too much sitting that have spurred the development of a new type of office ergonomics, a treadmill desk! Designed to address the sitting crisis it is now being used by companies such as Intel, Apple and Google, to boost employee health and productivity. While it is good to be able to think on your feet, ironically one of the most beneficial exercises of all can actually be done on your seat.

Indoor rowing is a highly effective all-around exercise that strengthens the muscles of the legs, back and arms, improves posture and enhances your ability to concentrate. It's a fast-growing fitness activity and a sport that is suitable for people of all ages and fitness levels. Indoorance® interactive rowing is a motivating exercise program that enables people to crew together and to race each other virtually on-screen or live online in real time. This week I participated in the last of the 2012 online Race Night Series on the virtual river with a group of other indoor rowers from around the world.

There's still time to register for the Concept2 Holiday Challenge . For more information on indoor rowing classes, competition and challenges, contact mike.creamer@indoorance.com

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