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Play Today for Health Tomorrow


Why does the term ‘working out’ include the word work? Who said getting fit has to feel like a chore?

Remember when you were a kid; you loved to play outside—endlessly. You hated it when your mom yelled for you to come home. Just as with eating, kids have the right idea when it comes to natural fitness.

Maybe it is time to let your inner child come out and play again. The trick is to get quiet and listen for what activity will inspire you: one that gets you jazzed just thinking about it.

Perhaps it’s something you haven’t done for years, or an interest you have never acted on. What’s holding you back? There’s no rule that says fitness can’t be enjoyable. Through play and movement, the fun of fitness and improved health, spirit and vitality can be yours.

Here’s Just a Short List of Ideas:

• Dancing: at a nightclub or a Nia, Zumba, ballet or similar dance class
• Hiking, orienteering, peak bagging…or even, walking the dog
• Climbing (indoor climbing gyms make this easy)
• Bicycling, inline skating or skate boarding
• Dodgeball, volleyball, basketball, soccer, tennis, squash or any game that involves a ball
• Join a sports team—leagues of all levels exist
• Canoe, kayak, row or sail
• Martial arts
• Ice skate, ski, sled or snowshoe
By David Clair, owner Fitness For Living

More Tips From Our Experts:

“Learn to fit in some kind of a meditation. Even five minutes in the morning checking in with your body. Try checking in for one minute before you eat a meal because being present is crucial.”
—Lisa Turner

“For adults who have children, if you can be teaching your children this concept now, we’re going to have a lot less eating disorders in the future. They don’t need to finish their entire plate; they need to listen to their own bodies. If they can learn to do it now they’ll be much better as adults.”
—Lesley Goth

“We ask people, what is the least amount of exercise you could do every day joyfully and consistently, and let’s start there.”
—Michelle May

Getting Started:
Solutions for your Resolutions

Further Reading

Check out these books to get started with mindful eating:

Intuitive Eating: A Revolutionary Program That Works, Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, St. Martin’s Paperbacks, 1996

Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat: How to Break Your Eat-Repent-Repeat Cycle, Michelle May, Greenleaf Book Group Press, 2009

The Rules of “Normal” Eating: A Commonsense Approach for Dieters, Overeaters, Undereaters, Emotional Eaters, and Everyone in Between!, Karen R. Koenig, Gurze Books, 2005

On the Web
Visit these sites for more information about our experts:

Michelle May: amihungry.com
Lisa Turner: inspiredeating.com and huffingtonpost.com/lisa-turner
Lesley Goth: lgcounselingservices.com

Practice Mindfulness
Three quick steps to start the path toward mindful eating:

1. When you want to eat, ask yourself, “Am I hungry?” Try to answer without judgment.
2. Let go of the diet mentality and remember that no foods are off-limits.
3. Honor your feelings of fullness and stop eating when you’ve had enough.