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DESCRIPTIONMake time for fun and relaxation Quarterly Wellness Magazine: Summer 2010 In This Issue: -Walk Your Way to Better Health - Make Time for Fun & Relaxation - Simple Summer Safety - Helping Your Child Manage Money and Opportunity on Their First Summer Job - Seasonal Recipe: Blueberries - Heat Stroke Quiz - The World’s Best Anti-Cancer Diet
Balanced LivingQuarterly Wellness Magazine: Summer 2010
Make time for fun and relaxation
In This Issue:
-Walk Your Way to Better Health
- Make Time for Fun & Relaxation
- Simple Summer Safety
- Helping Your Child Manage Money and
Opportunity on Their First Summer Job
- Seasonal Recipe: Blueberries
- Heat Stroke Quiz
- The Worlds Best Anti-Cancer Diet
Compared with other forms of exercise, walking can seem so ... pedestrian.
Running is dynamic. In-line skating is flashy. Biking has great accessories. But walking?
"Walking is still the most viable exercise option for most people," says Glen Duncan, Ph.D., an exercise researcher at the University of Florida College of Medicine. "You don't have the injury problems that can happen with running, and it's an activity that gets most people into their target heart rate."
Over 81 million Americans have already caught on, according to a survey by the National Sporting Goods Association.
Still not convinced walking is for you? Let's look at your reservations one at a time.
I Dont Have Enough TimeDo you have nine minutes a day? A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that walking at a moderate pace as little as an hour per week halved the risk of coronary heart disease for a group of women 45 and older. That's much less time than the standard proposed by the American College of Sports Medicine and other groups: a half-hour of physical activity on most days. But for people who normally don't exercise, a few minutes a day can make a big difference. "The women we studied were like the general American public. They were pretty sedentary," says the study's lead researcher, I-Min Lee, Sc.D., an associate professor of
medicine at Harvard Medical School. The study showed "physical activity is not an all-or-nothing situation. Even if you do a little you can benefit." View an hour a week as a minimum, she says. "I would recommend that people aim for the current recommendations of 30 minutes of exercise a day, four to five days a week. That is a very sensible level where you get health benefits almost risk-free."
I Cant Get MotivatedYou're not alone. Dr. Duncan says more than a quarter of all Americans report that they don't engage in any consistent physical activity. "By the time people come home from a long day at work, after fighting traffic, most people just don't feel like doing much of anything," he says.
But Dr. Lee feels her study offers an
Walk Your Way to Better Health
encouraging message. "An hour a week is a very doable goal as a starting point for just about everybody," she says.
Walking is a relatively easy alternative to plopping down in front of the television. It can be done just about anywhere, and a good pair of shoes is the only equipment you need.
Walking isnt Intense EnoughTo reap health benefits from exercise, you need to get your heart pumping at 55 to 65 percent of capacity.
"That's going to fall into the category of walking for most people," Dr. Duncan says.
A simple formula can tell you if you're reaching your target heart rate:
1. Subtract your age from 220 to get your maximum heart rate.
2. Multiply that number by 0.6.3. The number you get equals the
heartbeats you want to achieve per minute.
For example, the target heart rate for a 35-year-old woman would be roughly 110 (220 minus 35 equals 185 times 0.6 equals 111).
If a stroll doesn't do it, you can always pick up the pace (after checking with your doctor). Howard "Jake" Jacobson, executive director of the Walkers Club of America, suggests pumping your arms like a sprinter, finding terrain with hills, and even jogging for short stretches to boost your walking workout.
Walking is BoringWalking can be a social activity. And that's not just because it's easy to hold a conversation.
You can find strength in numbers by joining a walking club. The Walking Club of America, for instance, has groups in many cities (write to P.O. Box 7601, Jupiter, FL 33468 for information).Walking can also be the centerpiece
of a vacation with friends or family. You can hike in national parks or walk well-traveled U.S. trails. You can even explore other nations by booking a walking tour through a travel agent.
Walking in SafetyWalking is probably the safest form of activity. But there are still some safety tips you should keep in mind:
Try to walk in well-traveled areas during daylight hours.
If you do walk before sunrise or at night, wear light-colored or white clothing. You can also buy reflective strips for your clothing and shoes.
Always walk facing traffic to see what's coming toward you.
Skip the headphones. You should always be aware of your surroundings.
If possible, walk with someone else.
Don't run from or stare at an unfriendly dog. With your eyes averted, back away while shouting "no."
If you hear thunder or spot lightning, head for home.
Get Off on the Right FootPutting one foot in front of the other may get you across the floor, but exercise walking is a bit more involved. We asked Howard "Jake" Jacobson, executive director of the Walkers Club of America, about the most common mistakes made by a beginning walker. His advice:
Wear proper shoes: You don't play basketball in wingtips, do you? They make shoes designed for walking. Buy a pair.
Warm up by walking slower for the first few minutes.
Stretch: Yes, you need to warm up even for walking. Mr. Jacobson recommends stretching a half-mile into your walk and then again when you're done for greater flexibility. Stretch your calves, hamstrings, hips and thighs. Four simple
stretches, done in as little as five to 10 minutes, will do the trick.
Keep hydrated: You lose water when you walk. Drink a glass a few minutes before you start. Then carry a bottle of water with you or, if possible, stop at fountains along the way.
Don't overstride: Extending beyond your normal stride length jolts your joints and actually slows you down.
Don't use ankle or hand weights: Weights add unnecessary momentum to your movements, interrupting the natural flow of your walk.
Wellness Library Health Ink and Vitality
Walk Your Way to Better Health
A sense of play and the ability to relax are second nature to some people. These folks don't need to be reminded of how good it feels to whack a tennis ball over a net or help their kids build a model railroad. For others, it helps to be reminded that play and relaxation have a purpose.
Why You Need Leisure In addition to providing
satisfaction in itself, as little as an hour a day of leisure time helps you stay in balance.
Physical fun in the form of aerobic activity helps dissolve the tension that accumulates in your body during stressful times.
When you add more leisure to your life, you'll become a healthier and more effective employee and parent.
How to Have FunHave you forgotten how to have fun?
If so, don't lose hope. Play is serious business for kids, so take some cues from your children. Healthy, happy kids invest their entire heart and soul into their play activities. They approach their physical games and flights of imagination with a kind of abandon most adults have forgotten is possible.
When it's your turn to play, choose some activities that are just for you. You can do other activities as a family.
If you need to schedule leisure time activities into your busy day, do so.
Pick sports, hobbies and outings that give you and your family a sense of enrichment or simply make everyone feel good.
Remember to allow time for unexpected pleasures.
Reserve quiet times at the beginning or end of the day to meditate or relax with a favorite quiet activity, such as reading or crafts.
Devote Yourself to FunOnce you've chosen an activity, put your whole heart and mind into it. If you have trouble letting go of worries and responsibilities, imagine that you've sealed your cares in a carton and stashed it under your desk for a few hours. The box will be there whenever you need to retrieve it. Here are some ideas for having fun:
Personal RecreationPursue a new hobby or revive a former one.Establish and maintain a regular exercise program.Learn a new sport. Consider racquetball, cycling, jogging, boating or dancing.Join a book discussion group.Seek a creative outlet in crafts, music or art.Join a community group.Enroll in a class.Call someone you haven't talked to in a long time.Go for a walk in a new part of town.Visit an antique shop.
Family FunAttend a sports or entertainment event together.Take your children to a special movie or amusement center.Go on cycling trips.Visit the zoo.Fly a kite.Take day trips to the country.Take walks around the neighborhood or to the park or library.Play charades and board games instead of watching television.Visit science and art museums.Make planning your vacation a family activity. Encourage your children to read travel brochures and library books about your destination. Discuss your trip and some of the sights you'll see.Participate in bike-a-thons, walk-a-thons and other fund-raisers.Try family folk dancing and square dancing.
Parlay International 2010
Make Time for Fun and Relaxation
Before you run to the beach or go to the pool, read these tips to help you stay safe
SunscreenProtect your children's skin from the sun. Use sunscreen to cut down their risk of skin cancer later in life.
Here are some tips: Limit children's time in the sun, particularly between
the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when the sun's rays are at their