My university classes are in full swing, and I have even less time than usual to do those things that keep my body, mind and spirit healthy.
Luckily, the health and fitness classes I teach are a constant reminder to me to practice what I preach.
[Ryan: …hey, that even rhymes!…]
Balance… I keep telling myself that it’s all about Balance.
This is actually the PERFECT time of year to remember the importance of balance in our lives. Those of us living in the Northern Hemisphere experienced the Autumnal Equinox this past weekend — September 22nd, the day of equal sunlight and equal darkness.
For me, the equinox is a reminder to strive for balance in all areas of my life. I think it’s important, because prolonged imbalance causes stress and strain that over time will wear us down physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Sure, there are times when we get off balance. Work has us running in a hundred different directions, or family life makes bigger than normal demands on our time. It’s okay when that condition is temporary. But imbalance cannot be our main operating mode.
Finding ways to honor and balance all aspects of your health is vital to long term wellness.
From a physical fitness perspective, maintaining balance means creating an exercise routine that address these 5 components of fitness:
- Cardiovascular Endurance
- Muscular Strength
- Muscular Endurance
- Body Composition
This isn’t new information for those of you on the Shapeshifter program. Our body redesign programs were created to encourage and enhance the development of a well-rounded healthy lifestyle. When you pay attention to all 5 components, meeting your health and fitness goals is a breeze!
This may seem obvious, but a reminder doesn’t hurt. Especially when it comes to my personal favorite component: flexibility training.
Even though it has a direct effect on all of the other physical fitness components, flexibility is the item most often left off the weekly list of “good things to do for my body.”
Sure, as an avid practitioner of yoga I am a little biased towards flexibility. However, you don’t have to practice yoga — or even believe in the holistic benefits of it — to understand how muscular inflexibility can inhibit improvements in the other components of fitness.
Muscular inflexibility can cause injury, lack of mobility and decreased range of motion in the muscles, ligaments, and joints. And all of these things can contribute to a decrease in your lean muscle mass which will, over time, adversely effect your body composition.
So as those of us in the Northern Hemisphere make our way toward the darkest part of the year (we are outright jealous of those Southern Hemisphere folks heading toward the light!), allow the change of seasons to serve as a reminder to take stock of your current state of health and wellness.
Work to emulate the change of seasons by making the necessary adjustments so you can come into a more balanced life experience, complete with good health and happiness.
Wishing you all the best!