Monday, April 25, 2011
With summer right around the corner, lots of us are looking to trim down and tone up—but the call of the couch can be hard to resist. Here are a few time-tested methods of staying motivated:
Setting realistic goals—and measuring your progress. Working toward a tangible goal, like losing inches or pounds or running a faster mile, helps create a greater sense of purpose. And charting progress toward that goal makes us feel the success.
Scheduling rewards. Getting healthier can be its own reward—but who wouldn’t work just a little bit harder knowing they had a treat like a massage or a pedicure in store when they reached a fitness milestone?
Writing a list. Life moves fast, and purpose can be easily forgotten in the hustle and bustle. Documenting exactly why you’re committed—whether it’s overcoming a health issue, living longer, looking slimmer, feeling better, or anything else—and reading it over can help keep you focused on the big picture.
Making it visual. Tacking up pictures of toned, healthy-looking bodies can be inspirational and helpful in keeping you on track. (Common sites are the fridge, to keep snacking at bay, and the alarm clock, to keep that early morning gym appointment.)
Baseball season’s in full swing, and we’ve got quick moves to keep you limber—ones you can actually do during the 7th inning break at the ball park. (They’ll also help you loosen up after taking the field in your summer softball league.)
Why should you be stretching? Let us count the ways: it decreases stiffness, increases your range of motion, improves posture and flexibility, helps reduce muscle tension, and improves your overall athletic performance.
Next time your stomach’s grumbling for a snack, try walnuts. Scientists recently found they have a combo of more healthful antioxidants and higher quality antioxidants than any other nut.
At the 241st National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society, the scientists reported that antioxidants in walnuts were 2 to 15 times as potent as vitamin E, an antioxidant powerhouse known to help protect the body against damaging natural chemicals involved in causing disease. Nuts are also a great source of protein, vitamins, and minerals like copper and magnesium.