Today, 1 in 8 women is at risk of developing breast cancer in their lifetime. While regular screenings have improved the early detection and overall prognosis of breast cancer, there is one thing that has altered the course of this disease over the past few years: increased awareness about the signs and risks.
In an effort to encourage people of all ages to maintain an active lifestyle, the President’s Council on Physical Fitness deemed May as National Physical Fitness and Sports Month. But maintaining an active lifestyle isn’t limited to just the 31 days of May; it’s something we should practice every day.
Whether it’s committing to a weekly workout routine or taking a few extra steps every day, here’s a little insight into how and why the right fitness mentality can give you the quality of life you deserve.
Why You Need to Fit Fitness into Your Life
Life is busy, that’s a fact. But a busy life without the proper coping mechanisms—like physical exercise—leaves your body prone to infection, disease and mental burnout.
How you get your energy governs how well your body functions. Think of your body as a circuit board powered by a solar panel, not a battery, where each circuit represents a different bodily process like breathing, regulating blood circulation and digesting. “Exercising creates organic energy to power your entire circuit. And consistent exercise creates an abundance of generated energy to keep a full charge even if you miss a day,” said Katherine Nelson, a personal training supervisor at Inspira Fitness Connection. “A battery—like an energy drink or an extra cup of coffee—might give you a quick energy boost, but it’s not sustainable.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2018, 42.2 percent of adults over the age of 18 met neither of the national physical activity guidelines for aerobic activity or muscle-strengthening—150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity a week.
“When you meet these guidelines, you reduce your risk of developing breast and lung cancer, type 2 diabetes and even low bone density,” said PJ Ragone, director of Sports Medicine at Inspira Health.
Making Your Exercise Routine
Whether you are focused on general healthy lifestyle changes, a pre-diabetes diagnosis, pre- or post-natal care or even post-surgery rehabilitation, figuring out your target goals is the first step to a healthier lifestyle. Remember: Physical activity is preventive health care.
“You visit the doctor when you don’t feel well, but that’s only half the battle. The other half is helping your body be as strong as it can, and that comes from exercising for 150 minutes every week,” said Nelson. “It doesn’t matter if you’re learning how to exercise for the first time or if you are looking to get back into a consistent routine, you just have to start.”
If you’re looking for some creative ways to include fitness into your day-to-day and meet that 150-minute goal, try:
- Downloading an app: As the saying goes, “There’s an app for that.” If you struggle with creating workout circuits or don’t know which muscles to target, find an app with free weekly routines.
- Switching up your lunch routine: Instead of sitting your entire lunch break, try segmenting your time. Enjoy a quick 15-minute walk outside and then eat your lunch.
- Join a community fitness center: “Gymtimidation” might seem scary, but when you find the right program and the right resources, fitness becomes less of a chore and something you look forward to maintaining.
For more information about how to create a fitness plan that becomes part of your daily fabric, go to www.InspiraFitnessConnection.com