It is okay to hate exercising. It can be tedious and boring and it takes up precious time. When we recommend and educate our patients with good exercises we know that exercise is about as much fun as brushing your teeth. And like brushing your teeth you won’t drop dead if you don’t exercise each day.
But over the long run it pays off in two big ways: Stability and endurance.
Day to day activity for most people involves certain muscles that get strong from working, taking care of the kids, house work, yard work and sports. Unfortunately these daily activities almost always leave out certain other muscles. the ‘stabilization muscles’. So when we give exercises to you we give stabilization exercising, because that helps maintain muscle balance. We give you exercises to strengthen the unused muscles; the muscles that don’t get used as much in all your daily work.
Many people have hard jobs, or their work keeps them busy and on their feet for hours each day. When they get home they feel tired and as if they have had a a long tiring ‘work out’ from their day. And they have. But even these people have not exercised all their important muscles. And this is also true of people who get home from work and then get involved in hobbies, sports, house work and yard work. The stabilization muscles still don’t get involved. So we give you our exercises to strengthen your stabilization muscles, because they are the ‘under-dogs’ that just don’t get used as much as our day-to-day muscle groups. And one of the best things about strengthening your stabilization muscles is that they not only help you have better posture and recover from your injury more quickly they also make it much harder to get re-injured.
Will your job, your sports, your housework, your yard work, or your hobbies ever be enough to let you have muscle balance and stabilization without doing these exercises? No. But if you think you are the exception can find out quickly enough. Just try our stabilization exercises, and if they all feel easy; you are one of the very few people whose job, sports, housework, yard work, or hobbies have resulted in great muscle balance, good posture and stable ability to avoid injury.
The second type of exercise we recommend is also important for our long term health, endurance exercise. Or aerobic exercises. We don’t mean aerobic as you may think of it as wearing leotards or taking a special class. All we mean by aerobics is that you are doing something that makes you huff and puff and have to breathe through your mouth. If your ‘aerobic’ activity does not force you to breathe through your mouth it is not an aerobic exercise.
Aerobic exercise is anything that forces you to breathe through your mouth. It could be dancing, bicycling, running, or fast walking. And for best results you must do it for 30 minutes at least 4 times each week. Aerobic exercise helps you in so many ways including your heart and your ability to stay active as you get older. Here is why:
Your heart and your lungs have a measurement called ‘maximum capacity’. This means what is the hardest activity that you can do and for how long. As we get older it is common for all of us to get weaker muscles including a weaker heart muscle. But aerobic exercises will slow this down and keep our heart and lungs stronger longer. If all you do each day is walk eventually that will be your ‘maximum effort’ and that will be your maximum capacity. And that means that just walking around will make you huff and puff and feel out of breath. How many older people have you seen breathing hard just to walk from one room to the next, or to walk up a flight of stairs.
Regular aerobic exercise will insure that you can walk room to room or climb the cellar stairs without huffing and puffing. You will stay be able to stay active and younger longer. Nothing else will do that.