Behavioral change

When the schedule gets tight, exercising is the first thing that gets overlooked. According to Wilson (2008), only about 22 % of the total US population gets the recommended amount of exercise (Loucks, Verdun, Heath & others, 1998). I happen to be amongst those who rarely exercise. Failure to exercise has many negative impacts. This research paper is intended to improve my exercising habits to the bare minimum recommenced level of exercise.

Long-term effects of not exercising

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Regular physical exercise have a variety of benefits including a healthier blood pressure, happier mood, and a reduced risk of diseases like cancers, diabetes, heart disease and obesity.

Overweight and obesity

Regular physical exercise helps one to attain and maintain a healthy weight. Similarly, individuals who do not exercise risk gaining weight and becoming obese (Loucks, Verdun, Heath & others, 1998). People who have more weight are likely to overwork their hearts and risk serious health complications which include type 2 diabetes, stroke, heart disease, and hypertension.

Diabetes

Overweight and obese individuals risk developing diabetes. Studies have shown that overweight individuals have a higher risk getting diabetes (Loucks, Verdun, Heath & others, 1998). On the other hand, regular exercises reduce body weight greatly hence lowering the chances of developing diabetes.

Cardiovascular disease

Physical inactivity causes hypertension, diabetes and obesity. All these contribute to the development of cardiovascular disease. Individuals who live an inactive or sedentary life are 30 to 50 percent more likely to develop hypertension (Ross, 2000). The contribution of physical inactivity to the risk of cardiovascular disease is similar to that of cholesterol, hypertension and smoking.

Premature death

According to an article on Urgent of Texas (2014) website, the WHO estimates the number of annual deaths associated with sedentary life at 3.2 million. Deaths associated with inactivity are comparable to those associated with the use of tobacco. Complications like diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease contribute to premature death.

Recommendations and action plan

Urgent of Texas (2014 ) and Wilson (2008) require that people exercise at least thirty minutes per day for a minimum of five days per week. While all people often put exercising to the sidelines during certain periods of their lives, those who know how much it helps one to cope with a busy lifestyle resume sooner. Wilson (2008) recommends that people adopt an exercising habit and stick to it while still looking to adopt a permanent exercise program. In my case, I have chosen to adopt the use of the stairs until I get used to exercising.

Decide on a goal

Goals are very important in exercising. While one may not be able to start with the recommended amount of exercises, one should at least target to do some specific amount of training. Goals should be realistic. One can choose to just do about ten minutes of intensive exercise per day three days a week. One may also set a goal of swimming once a week for thirty minutes. It could also be attending a yoga class on Friday evenings. Whatever the case, one should ensure that the selected activity is achievable. While I have not selected a goal as yet, I am considering swimming since I used to enjoy swimming when I was younger. Lack of company and a busy schedule have contributed to my lack of following up on swimming. I am free on Saturday afternoons. I should consider allocating an activity to this time.

Make a plan

Planning makes goals more achievable. A mere five 5 minute daily improvement in a week is significant to alleviating the implications of a sedentary life. The plan should therefore accommodate a little more exercise each week. Initially, the goal should be simply to stick to the weekly plan. However, as the tasks become easier, one should increase them to something more difficult. The plan should strive to ensure that by the end of a year, one is able of getting three to four hours of exercise per week. Such exercise will be sufficient to make most of the exercising to be done while you are out of breath.

Wilson (2008) recommends using the acronym FIT when drawing a plan. First one should strive to just work on the “F”. “F” stands for frequency. This should be the intention that one will perform exercises at least five times per week. Once one is comfortable with this, he should move to “T”. “T” stands for the time spent on each activity.  Once one is capable of achieving the set amount of time, he should move to “I”. “I” stands for intensity. The recommended amount of exercise is thirty minutes of intense exercise. Intensity of exercises can be increased by increasing the pace, the load in case of weigh bearing exercises and using hills and stairs.

I am considering making a habit of walking in the morning to begin with. With time, I will increase the number of times Go for a walk. Then I will change my walk to a run. I intend to start with thirty minutes of exercise at once and to ensure work on intensity and frequency slowly. The reason for this is that I am not badly out of shape.

References

Loucks, A., Verdun, M., Heath, E., & others,. (1998). Low energy availability, not stress of exercise, alters LH pulsatility in exercising women. Journal Of Applied Physiology, 84(1), 37–46.

Ross, C. (2000). Walking, exercising, and smoking: does neighborhood matter?. Social Science \& Medicine, 51(2), 265–274.

Urgent of Texas,. (2014). News – Urgent Care & Occupational Health Center of Texas, P.A. in Boerne, Bulverde and New Braunfels. Retrieved 17 October 2014, from http://urgentcareoftexas.com/news/longterm.php

Wilson, E. (2008). Recapture your bounce (1st ed.). Oxford: Infinite Ideas.

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