It doesn't matter where you are; what matters is where you are going. This saying applies to just about every aspect of your life, and perhaps it is especially true with respect to fitness and nutrition. Whether you are currently a non-exerciser, a "weekend warrior", or a marathon runner, the fact is, if you fail to maintain an adequate level of physical activity and eat nutritious foods, you are more susceptible to heart disease, diabetes, and other illnesses. But if you choose to remain active and maintain healthful eating habits, you can have a positive impact your health.
You have the ability to shape your future (and your body, to some degree). The first step is to make a decision ... you must decide to make physical activity and proper nutrition two of the most important aspects of your life. But before you rush off to purchase a new piece of exercise equipment or a new "sweatsuit", take a minute or two to consider what you are doing. What is your motivation to begin or continue an exercise and healthy eating program? Are you doing it so that everyone else will think you're interested in keeping up with the latest fad, or are you genuinely interested in your health?
The truth is, health is an intangible blessing that is most often desired once it's gone. Don't wait for ill-health to overcome you before making the decision to be healthy. Committing yourself to be physically active and be selective in the foods that you eat can be a major step toward improving your health profile.
Everyone is busy - we all need to go to work, pay the bills, go grocery shopping, clean the house, do the laundry, watch the kids and drive them to after-school activities, or even go to school ourselves. These and a host of other things seem to fill up our days - so who has time to exercise and eat nutritious foods? When you consider the alternative, you may decide to find the time to spend on yourself and your future health. Whether we know it or not, everyone will eventually need to take the time for SOMETHING; if we don't take time NOW for exercise, we will almost certainly need to take time LATER for illness and infirmity. The choice is pretty clear; we can spend a little time taking care of our bodies now, or TRY to fix them up when they break down later.
Consider how difficult (and expensive) it is to fix an old, broken down car, versus setting aside a little time to keep it running smoothly throughout it's life. Take stock in yourself: are you a shiny, glistening, clean, well-tuned '56 Thunderbird, or a beat-up, oil-burning, chug-and-sputter '68 pickup truck? When you consider the two choices, think about it... the age of the equipment doesn't matter much, does it - it's what has been done to that equipment to keep it running smooth that makes all the difference in the world. And the choice is yours - do you want to be well-tuned or sluggish?
Exercise: You don't need to become a marathon runner to achieve health and physical fitness. And although it is convenient to have one or two pieces of quality exercise equipment in your home, you don't even need to have equipment to maintain an adequate level of physical activity. What you do need, is to get at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity most days of the week. Don't be discouraged if 30 minutes seems like too much time right away - start with 20 minutes or even 15 minutes - anything is better than nothing!
There are many ways to incorporate more physical activity into your lifestyle. Unfortunately, many people just don't spend the time to think of some of the "tips" that are listed in this calendar. You will find dozens of ways that others like yourself have found time to get their daily dose of physical activity.
It is beyond the scope of this brief introduction to outline all of the aspects you need to consider when beginning an exercise program. Some of the most important aspects include duration, frequency, intensity and type of activity. If you need information on various physical activities, visit a sports medicine professional or check out a book at your local library. Hopefully, by the time you're ready to begin your lifelong journey of healthy living, you will have already chosen at least one activity that is appropriate for your abilities and fitness level.
Nutrition: In order to make an impact on your nutritional habits, you can start with small changes, as outlined in this calendar. As time goes by, the small changes that you continue to make will lead to more significant changes. But be aware; this calendar is not a diet calendar, and it should not be though of as a diet calendar. The goal is to help you make the changes that you would like to make in order to live a more healthy lifestyle. Diet's don't work; over 90% of the people who lose weight on a diet regain the weight within one year. Changing the way you eat, along with the things you eat, will make a much longer-lasting impact - the effects are limited in large part by your commitment to your health, and maintaining good eating habits.
Whether you are 20, 50, or 80 years old (or older), this calendar provides fitness and nutrition tips that almost everyone can learn from. Your task, once you find at least one physical activity that fits your personality; is to begin it. And if you ever start to think that you don't have the will power to continue your exercise and nutritional program, don't just stop eating right and exercising; consider a few famous words spoken by Winston Churchill: "Never give up. Never, ever give up".
We hope you reach your goals in life, and that the 1998 Exercise and Nutrition Calendar assists you in the process.
Remember, the choice is truly yours.
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