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'Use It Or Lose It' Is So True

By Sandy Schroeder

You may have heard the warning to move more now, so you can continue to move later, but do you believe it? Well, British researchers decided to study the adage, "Use it or lose it," and found out just how true it really is.

They found within two weeks, people who were formerly fit, but then stopped moving, showed a decline in lung and heart health, grew fatter around the waist, added body and liver fat, and encountered higher levels of insulin resistance, according to

If you think about it, people who go in for surgery have to get up and start moving as soon as possible to avoid losing too much of their vitality and energy. It is the same principle. Inactivity weakens the body.

The researchers found two weeks of no activity that saw 10,000 steps shrink to 1,500 steps a day, increased the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease, according to study from Newcastle University and the University of Liverpool.

In other words, a few steps in the wrong direction can quickly lead to many more. But the good news is the body is capable of bouncing back if movement starts up again.

For me, this felt like something I should type into my computer, blow up to bulletin board size and hang over my desk. It would say: Don't just sit there, get moving!!!

Don't Just Sit There, Get Moving

When you realize how much strength and energy can be lost in two weeks, it makes sense to put exercise at the top of the list on a daily basis. Instead of just trying to fit it in here or there, get serious, and get out there. When you do, you will be avoiding serious disease risks, enjoying life more, and ensuring that you can keep right on doing this as you age. Here are some simple ways to go.

  • Get a new bike and be on it every day
  • Start hiking with community groups or with your family
  • Do a 15- to 20-minute neighborhood walk before breakfast or after dinner
  • Sign up for a yoga class
  • Find out if a tai chi class fits you
  • Get a workout buddy and commit to a daily walk
  • Try a high energy dance class
  • Try a barre studio class
  • Turn household chores into regular exercise
  • Try pickup games in basketball or volleyball
  • Look for community soccer teams
  • Change up your exercise routine on a weekly basis
  • Take up jogging or running

This is just a starter list. You may have some better ideas to keep moving every day. Whatever works, do it. When you consider how much good health and enjoyment of life is at stake, whatever you do will be worth it.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Atlanta, Ga.

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