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Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Don't stay indoors this winter

     With the change in weather and the shorter days it is always more challenging to stay active physically as Winter approaches.  I recently came across an article in the New York Times that talked about how exercise slows the aging process.  It seems that the life expectancy of our cells has an impact on our overall life expectancy and how fast we age.  We all know that life choices, like smoking and poor nutrition choices, can have a negative impact on our life expectancy but we can increase our life expectancy by including regular exercise, especially aerobic exercise that makes you sweat, into our regular daily activity.  The problem with getting started with an exercise program is that for many people the thought of exercise is of something that is unpleasant.  Forcing yourself to get up an hour earlier and getting on a treadmill is not something anybody would probably sustain for any period of time.
     I think the best way to increase physical activity is to find something that you enjoy and then add a component that includes physical activity.  For some this may include dancing, playing a sport, swimming or just getting out in nature and walking.

2016 Winter Guide Cover

     In looking over the Winter Activity Guide from Howard County Parks and Recreation you have the following choices:
Aquatics,  Badminton , Baseball & Tee Ball, Basketball, Cricket, Dodgeball, Fencing, Field Hockey,  Fitness,  Floor Hockey, Gymnastics, Jump Rope, Kickball, Pickleball, Soccer, Tennis and Volleyball.  Don't be intimidated to participate in any of these activities as they usually include people of all ages and abilities.  If you are over 50 especially consider trying pickleball which is geared to older adults and growing rapidly in Howard County.
     Don't let Winter be a time of inactivity.  Your cells will thank you.

P.S.
   

    Try one of the most enjoyable things I do every Winter.  When it starts snowing I go out and walk along one of our paths or lakes.  Nothing is more magical than walking in the snow and watching how it changes the scenery around us.
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