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5 Pillars of Health: Movement

Our bodies were born to move. A sedentary lifestyle puts you at risk for a wide range of chronic ailments, including heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, depression, osteoporosis, and osteoarthritis. In fact, increased levels of physical activity and fitness are directly correlated with a lower risk of mortality. But not only that, moving your muscles also produces endorphins and a chemical that helps the brain deal with stress. Sound pretty important? It is! But here are three focuses to help keep this pillar strong and lifted high.

STRENGTH TRAINING

Strength training is a key component of overall health and fitness for everyone, no matter your age or fitness level. Want to reduce body fat, increase lean muscle mass and burn calories more efficiently? Strength training is the most effective movement to accomplish these goals. Want stronger bones? By stressing your bones, strength training can increase bone density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. 

Strength training can be done using body weight, resistance tubing, free weights, weight machines or cable suspension training. Choose a weight or resistance level heavy enough to tire your muscles after about 12 repetitions. When you can easily do more repetitions of a certain exercise, gradually increase the weight or resistance. This micro-progressive overloading is, in a nutshell, a gradual and trackable increase of stress on the body to warrant a goal-oriented adaptation. 

WALK MORE

Walking is easily the most under-rated movement. Mastering 7K steps per day will make fat loss a lot easier. Why? Because walking is a lower impact exercise and can be done anywhere and for longer periods of time than other more vigorous forms of movement and exercise. Researchers found that the energy used for moderate-intensity walking and vigorous-intensity running resulted in similar reductions in risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and heart disease over the study’s six year period. 

A daily walk can reduce the risk of stroke in both men and women, reduce the days spent in a hospital each year and can even lower your risk of death by up to 39%. Engaging in activities that allow our minds to wander promotes a mental state conducive to innovative ideas, which is why walking also increases creative output up to 60%. The act of walking is also a proven mood booster, just 12 minutes of walking can increase in cheerfulness, energy, attentiveness and self-confidence versus the same time spent sitting.

STRETCHING & MOBILITY

Stretching is a training method that improves flexibility. Flexibility is fundamental for improving performance in physical activities. Numerous studies show that regular stretching and maintaining good flexibility and mobility helps in reducing injury and preventing injury from occurring.

Mobility is a fitness attribute that is a combination of flexibility and strength, with an ultimate aim of a healthy, active range of motion for your daily activity and  life. To stay flexible, moving, and injury-free, warm up before each workout with some dynamic stretches, which are like your workout but at a lower intensity. Save static stretching for after your workout, when the circulation to your muscles and joints have increased from movement. 

TIP: Our Fitness Coaches are the perfect accountability and partner to track your movement and progress, keeping your goals and progressions in mind each workout to ensure a life filled with positive, injury-free movement.

AIM: Aim for 3-5 moderate exercises per week, for 45 min each. Additionally, increase your low-impact movement by aiming for 7,000 steps per day. 

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