Some of my friends on the running website I belong to have nicknamed me Forrest Gump. I am hoping that is because of the distance I jog in a week and not my intelligence level. Jogging is a passion that I developed in the past few years. While I have done it for periods of time in my younger years, I did not do it regularly. I have found many benefits in my life from taking up this new hobby. I feel better physically and emotionally. I have goals I work towards and feel good when they are accomplished. It is a good stress reliever and my overall health has improved since starting a regular exercise routine. I include yoga, bike riding, aerobics and other work outs (many great work outs are offered at www.exercisetv.tv) . There are a lot of health benefits that come from having physical activity as a part of your daily life. The top five reasons the Mayo Clinic gives for adding exercise to your life are:
1. Improved mood and mental health- exercise helps release certain chemicals in the brain that can relieve stress and help your emotional wellbeing. You will feel better about yourself and it can boost your self esteem. The World Health Organization found that depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide.
2. Exercise can help fight against chronic illnesses- Osteoporosis, heart disease, high blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes can all be improved or combatted by having a weekly exercise regiment
3. Weight control- In a society where over 30% are obese weight control can be difficult but having proper exercise as a part of your life can help you control your weight and stay within healthy parameters.
4. Healthier heart and lungs- exercise can strengthen your vital organs such as your heart and lungs. While you may find that you are winded at the beginning of your exercise journey, after making a part of your daily routine things will get easier. You will find that you can perform all your other tasks in life much easier and without the strain and effort that you used to need. Yard work, walking upstairs and other activities will not be nearly as hard to do.
5. Better Sleep patterns- When you exercise regularly, you tend to sleep better. Recent studies have shown that the majority of us are sleep deprived. This can lead to lack of concentration, moodiness, health concerns and a variety of other issues. Adding exercise three to five times a week can give you a more sound and regular sleeping pattern and improve your life in every area.
According to FASTSTATS only 31% of adults in the US engage in regular leisure time physical activities and 67% of people over the age of 20 are overweight. 32% of adults over the age of 20 have hypertension and almost 10% of adults are in poor health.
Exercise can improve ones physical and mental health, both now and in the future. You don’t have to run 50 miles a week but even having a walk each evening or taking up a league sport again can help you feel, look , sleep, concentrate and be better in every single aspect of life. The only thing proven better than exercise for your overall health is service to others, so why not combine the two- get involved with a local youth group, donate time helping with sports programs for children or help with recreation programs for seniors at the local nursing home. Rake a sick neighbours yard or cut their grass, take an ill friends dog for a walk or walk over to the local soup kitchen or shelter and help out. You only have one life to live so why not live it to the fullest.
I’ll close this post before I go for my jog with a joke one of my friends sent me this week and hope that you have a healthy and happy day!
FORREST GUMP GOES TO HEAVEN
The day finally arrived. Forrest Gump dies and goes to Heaven. He is at
the Pearly Gates, met by St. Peter himself..
However, the gates are closed,
and Forrest approaches the gatekeeper.
St. Peter said, ‘Well, Forrest, it is certainly good to see you. We have heard a lot about you.. I must
tell you, though, that the place is filling up fast, and we have been
administering an entrance examination for everyone. The test is short, but you have to
pass it before you can get into Heaven.’
Forrest responds, ‘It sure is good to be here, St. Peter, sir.
But nobody ever told me about any entrance exam. I sure hope that the
test ain’t too hard. Life was a big enough test as it was.’
St. Peter continued, ‘Yes, I know, Forrest, but the test is only three questions.
What two days of the week begin with the letter T?
How many seconds are there in a year?
What is God’s first name?’
Forrest leaves to think the questions over.
He returns the next day and sees St. Peter, who waves him up, and says,
‘Now that you have had a chance to think the questions over, tell me
Forrest replied, ‘Well, the first one — which two days in the week
begins with the letter ‘T’?
Shucks, that one is easy.. That would be Today and Tomorrow.’
The Saint’s eyes opened wide and he exclaimed, ‘Forrest, that is not
what I was thinking, but you do have a point,
and I guess I did not specify, so I will give you credit for that
answer.. How about the next one?’ asked St. Peter.
‘How many seconds in a year?
Now that one is harder,’ replied Forrest, but I thunk and thunk about that,
and I guess the only answer can be twelve.’
Astounded, St. Peter said, ‘Twelve?
Forrest, how in Heaven’s name could you come up with twelve seconds in a year?’
Forrest replied, ‘Shucks, there’s got to be twelve: January 2nd,
February 2nd, March 2nd.. ‘
‘Hold it,’ interrupts St. Peter. ‘I see where you are going with
this, and I see your point,
though that was not quite what I had in mind….but I will have to
give you credit for that one, too.
Let us go on with the third and final question.
Can you tell me God’s first name’?
‘Sure,’ Forrest replied, ‘it’s Andy..’
‘Andy?’ exclaimed an exasperated and frustrated St Peter.
‘Ok, I can understand how you came up with your answers to my first two questions, but just how in
the world did you come up with the name Andy as the first name of God?’
‘Shucks, that was the easiest one of all,’ Forrest replied.
‘I learnt it from the song, ‘ANDY WALKS WITH ME, ANDY TALKS WITH ME,
ANDY TELLS ME I AM HIS OWN..’
St. Peter opened the Pearly Gates, and said: ‘Run Forrest, run.’