Dancing in the Rain: Lessons Learned on my Personal Journey with PD (more at www.PDPlan4Life.com) Copyright 2013 Sheryl Jedlinski
According to the National Health Research Institute in Taiwan just “15 minutes of exercise a day, or about 90 minutes a week, can add years to your life.” Now they tell me, after I spent the first 40+ years of my life using every lame excuse in the book to avoid exercise. It wasn’t until I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s, and learned that daily exercise could potentially slow my disease progression, that I morphed from a couch potato into an exercise enthusiast, debunking my own excuses along the way. How many of these excuses have you tried?
Exercise is boring
If you believe this, I have good news for you. Anything that gets your body moving counts as physical activity. So if you aren’t into pumping iron or doing Zumba, don’t despair. Alternative activities like walking your dog and shopping can earn you exercise points as well. Should you decide to walk the treadmill, or ride a stationary bike, you might find that time passes quicker if you watch tv or read a book at the same time. If you lack the motivation to get moving or to push yourself to the next level, try exercising with a friend, joining a group exercise class, or working with a personal trainer. It is amazing how much more we can do when others are watching. Periodically varying your daily regimen also will help keep your interest up.
I’m too busy to exercise
If you make exercise a priority, and put it on your calendar as you do other commitments, you will find a way to fit it in. If you have to divide your exercise time into several shorter sessions instead of one long one, that’s okay. Make exercise part of your commute, if necessary. Park your car farther away from your office or get off the bus or train a stop early so you get in a good walk.
I’m too tired to exercise
Physical activity actually releases “feel-good” hormones called endorphins that boost energy levels, promote regular sleep patterns, and improve mood.
I can’t afford to join a gym
You don’t have to. You can do all the exercises you need to in your own home using balls, and bands.
I don’t like to sweat
Choose lower intensity activities, like tai chi, yoga, pilates, or gentle stretching.
I’m too old to start exercising
The sooner we start exercising the better, but, it is never too late and we are never too old.
I leave you with one final thought: Only exercise the muscles you want to keep working for you.