Lifestyle Choices

Bodies need to move to remain healthy, and to that end, the gym workout is an excellent way to introduce controlled motion to improve health. With forethought routine tasks can also be made into beneficial exercises. Whether working out at the gym, or using the garden or workplace task as exercise, good form is everything. The key is a good neutral frame, balanced motion, and a conscientious lift that has the body feeling stretched and ready before engaging the activity.

What this means is stopping for a moment to think, and then, making yourself the most important part of the task. Stop to discern how your body feels before engaging the activity, and stretch if there is imbalance. Test lift the object before lifting, to feel how loading feels, and to use the weight as an assist to areas that need stretching or warming up. Use good balance and form during a lift, and when doing common tasks, distribute your time among each chore so one chore isn’t done repetitively until everything falls apart.

It then takes just a little creative thought to use items that are part of the chore as makeshift exercise appliances. A shovel can become a stretching bar for above and behind the back while your walking to the job location. A rock becomes a counter balance weight for stretching hamstrings before a lift, or a weight for biceps curls or triceps presses while moving it across the yard. Mowing the lawn becomes a case for long balanced strides behind the mower, and a good upright posture can be used to focus holding the lower abdomen firmly to stabilize the pelvis.

Try it and you’ll find the chore still gets done, and your body is better served by the exercise.