I almost forgot due to my slacking off on exercising, the information I want to share with you.
So, in my news feed on Oct 20th last year, I read how going without exercise for even 10 days can have a negative impact on our ability to remember things. I must admit that I almost forgot to write this article but that is no surprise since I have spent more time recently sitting on my gluts than using them. However, seeing my elliptical standing in the room unused and seeing this piece about the benefits of exercising on my want to write list, I first think about the irony of this because I do remember thinking I don’t want that to happen to me and then, BAM! Time flies and I’d say that was a close one. It has been about a week since I’ve been on the elliptical so I didn’t forget completely, phew!
Okay, let me recap the chain of events or downward spiral if we let go of the exercising habit. This recap is a combination of the article I first read in Time and then another one in Self magazine.
*10 days is enough time for the blood flow to slow its way down to the hippocampus. That is the part in the brain where emotions and memories are stored. Not a good idea if we need to be in control of our emotions and if we enjoy remembering things like appointments and birthdays. Low blood flow = low emotional state and slow recall.
*14 days is enough to make you feel as if you attempted Mt. Everest when you only tried to make it up one flight of stairs. This drop in endurance comes from a drop in available oxygen for your body to use. The feeling of being out of breath is not a good one so if we don’t like it we’d better keep climbing stairs on a more regular basis if we want to keep from just giving up and plopping down on the couch where things only get worse. Some of the side effects of sitting at this stage are increases in blood pressure and increases in blood glucose levels so be aware or “beware” of sitting too long.
*28 days is all we need in order to begin seeing or feeling a decrease in strength. Don’t use it and we lose it, eventually. I don’t know about you but even when I am very active and in shape I have the hand strength of a 12 year old-I personally cannot afford to lose that.
*42-56 days is all we need to notice that our external checkpoints are not fitting so well. Those checkpoints would be our favorite clothes. One day they fit fine and we feel fine and some 40 days later, they are sadly not able to help keep us covered. What the heck? We need to be doing something! And if that wasn’t bad enough if we did some blood work we would most likely find our blood sugar levels have risen right along with those numbers on the bathroom scale.
What if we decide we not only don’t want to become flabby but that we don’t want to start forgetting things and feeling blue? We know this will help us have a sound body and mind—but what do we do?
I think we need to reframe our thoughts about exercise. If we think of exercise as a BOGO (Buy one get one) then as we are keeping our bodies in shape we have the added benefit of keeping our mind in shape.
If we are able to get out and walk for even 20 minutes the benefits are wonderful, take a look at what can be expected:
- Improved mood=Yay!
- Increased energy=double Yay!
- Lower risk of heart disease=trifecta in YAY!
- Longer life
- Lowered risk of diabetes
- Stronger memory
- Weight loss
We might have to find creative ways to sneak exercise in and I am sure if we are serious about not only our health of the body but of our minds, then we will find time.
Really tight on time?
So what if we just try to get in say 7-10 minutes of exercise at a time? Can this really help?
The research says YES!
Research from Brett Kilka and Chris Jordan did a study on HICT-(high –intensity circuit training) includes 12 exercises using only body weight as resistance. This form of exercise can be beneficial for weight loss, improving the amount of O2 we have available so we don’t feel winded going up one flight of stairs and can decrease insulin resistance which is a good thing if we are predisposed to becoming diabetic.
Here is their simple 7 minute routine. I will have to substitute some of these exercises as my back will totally rebel and I will be down for more than 10 days which could lead to all kinds of negative stuff and eventually I would forget to exercise at all so it is better to be safe and remember than try to power through something only to hurt yourself and end up on the injured reserved couch losing your memory and gaining weight.
- Jumping jacks
- Wall sit
- Abdominal crunch
- Step up onto chair—didn’t say how high chair was though
- Triceps dip on the same chair we just stepped up on
- High knee/running in place
- Pushups with a twist
- Side planks oh my
If this sounds like something you want to try you can watch the video here.
Bottom line is we need to keep moving no matter what our preferred method and we need to do it more often, so get off this computer and get moving…You’ve got to move it, move it…J