My Exercise Regime
A few months ago, I considered myself as well-exercised. Thanks to the persistent training of our little Jack Russell terrier, we knew that 5 pm meant a brisk walk down to the beach! But then she got old, and my left knee had to be replaced, and we both agreed a short stroll round the blog was all the exercise we needed.
Zoe died, but the discipline of exercise continued. (She had trained us well.)
Then enter the fitbit which we’ll look at tomorrow. And I discovered I did nothing like enough exercise. If I wanted to improve my health, my mind, and my all round life, I needed to increase my exercise regime drastically.
Pros of healthy exercise:
- It increases our intake of oxygen and thus improves our blood flow,
- This in turn keeps our blood vessels healthy,
- When we don’t exercise enough, we face a major risk of memory loss.
- Exercise increases the size of the hippocampus which helps to stimulate memory.
- Improves cognitive function.
- Elevates the mood and ability to focus.
- Helps to lower blood sugar levels, so reduces the risk of diabetes.
- Stabilizes blood pressure.
- Gets the person sweating which helps the body detoxify.
- Improves sleep quality.
- Boosts immunity.
- Exercise stimulates the ability of the brain to take in new information.
Hurry up and walk!
According to research, an 80-year-old person who walks at one mile per hour has a 10% of reaching 90. If that same person moved at say 3.5 mph, he or she increases the chance of reaching 90 to 84%! (Journal of the Americal Medical Association 305 no 1)
So apart from walking, what exercises are best? It all depends on what you’re trying to achieve. An assortment of different exercises will help to improve your body, your brain, your mental abilities, and in other words, your life!
- According to Dr. Amen, the best exercise for coordination is table tennis! ( I love this as it’s the only sport I enjoy! 🙂
- Tai Chi
The best mental exercises are ones which involve learning new knowledge. No matter how complicated your job may be, learning a new technique, game, or activity is always more beneficial to your brain.
Doing crosswords all day, or playing sudoku for hours on end won’t give you full benefits.
Good games to play are:
- Strategy games such as Risk or chess.
- Tetris – now this is an interesting one. Just 3 minutes of Tetris is known to decrease cravings for drugs, alcohol, food, and gambling. If you play Tetris too long, it becomes almost hypnotic, where you are no longer thinking but working almost in a trance.
- Weight training combined with aerobics (fast walking) and some sort of problem solving is often helpful with dementia patients.
- Balancing exercises.
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