Download the 2011 Career Handbook HERE
What is True Fitness?
Fitness is the result of proper diet and regular exercise. It may sound like a simple concept, but it is a key factor in living a long and healthy life. Fitness is essential in warding off health problems such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
Fitness begins with a healthy diet. With a little knowledge, a healthy diet is simple to develop and maintain. It is important to eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables each day. Your daily diet should include foods that are high in fiber (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans). Cut back on foods with sugar, salt, and refined flour. Eat less red meat and more poultry and lean meats. Substitute butter and margarine with olive and canola oil. Keep your cholesterol intake down to less than 300 milligrams per day. Eat more fish and nuts. Try to get your vitamins and minerals from the foods you eat instead of nutritional supplements. Make sure to get enough calcium by drinking skim milk and eating low-fat yogurt. Limit your alcohol intake.
Exercise is not as simple as a healthy diet. This is because everyone is different. You must develop an exercise plan that works for you. If you just want to exercise for the health benefit alone without focusing on strength training, then the type and intensity of exercise you do would differ greatly from someone who is looking to train for a marathon or gain muscle mass. A 30-year-old pregnant woman would need to exercise differently from a 30-year-old man for obvious reasons. A person with a history of ankle problems would have to be more particular about what kind of exercise they do versus a person who has never experienced an injury.
When deciding what kind of exercise is right for you, think about your needs and what you want to accomplish with exercising. Regardless of what works for you, keep in mind that everyone should exercise at least 20 minutes per day, 3-4 times per week. Find a plan that you know you will be able to maintain.
Exercise does not have to be something you dread. It can be fun! What you make of it is totally up to you. You can take your dog on a long walk, which would be good for you and your dog. Join a gym so that you have equipment and weights readily available. Consider joining the YMCA so that your whole family can be healthier (they even have childcare available). Take a kickboxing or yoga class a few times a week. You can even go play basketball with your friends. It doesn't matter what you do - just get up and move around.
With proper diet and regular exercise, you can be on your way to a lifetime of fitness. Don't wait! Now is the time to get started. You are on your way to a healthier lifestyle