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Fitness Can Be the Sum Total of its Parts

By Tom Herrin

Many times when we think about getting in better shape, we think we have to jump in full blast.  We feel like it is all or nothing.  While there is much to say about commitment, the little things can often add up to a total benefit.  I know I have been guilty of trying to get in what I thought was a full workout or else.  The reality is that short activities can bring good results whether it is strength building or cardio.  

Increase Strength

It is now a popular belief that short periods of intense training can be extremely productive.  This is preceded and followed by slower warm-up and warm-down activities.  The cycle is repeated several times for the desired amount of time.  And when I say intense, I mean intense for you.  You have to temper the intensity level to your own condition.  There will be a benefit at any level.  

Lower Blood Sugar 

There have been some new, though small, studies about walking immediately after a meal.  Even though the walking was casual and for only 10 minutes or so, the results were very consistent.  Blood sugar was lowered.  This could be a great way to head off blood sugar problems for those who have those tendencies but not full-blown early onset types.  A walk around the block, or even the yard, could bring you better health with a very small time commitment.

Improve Circulation

Any time an activity increases your heart rate you will improve your circulation.  Provided you are reasonable and measured.  Increased circulation will make your heart and circulatory system more efficient.  More blood can be carried with less effort.  A better supply of blood will reach your cells, which provides a more efficient exchange of food, oxygen, and the things that make your body actually work.  Along with all this comes better breathing as it all goes hand-in-hand.  I know I found that riding an exercise bike for sometimes as little as 15 minutes made me feel better and manage my overall health.  I had previously thought I needed to get out and do an hour or so.  Many people now find that little bits of exercise lasting only 10 or 15 minutes done several times a day can add up to the improved health we all seek.  With just a little planning, you might just see a much fitter self.  Give it a try.

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