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Healthy

Keep Your Body Functioning Properly

Many people believe that it is simply a matter of luck as to how long we will live or even how our health will be as we grow older. We used to believe that genetics played a big part in the state of our health. But now we know our life span and more specifically our health span is mostly determined by the choices we make every single day – especially food, exercise and lifestyle choices.
We get a grace period with our body when we are younger; it works away for us without complaint putting up with neglect and ill treatment. Sporting weekend warrior attempts, nights out on the town, long periods of inactivity and repetitive incorrect movement patterns it takes in its stride. But then after a certain point we start to notice things aren’t what they used to be.
Aches, pains injuries, niggles, loss of strength, stiffness and lack of energy start to conspire against us. Often we don’t become fully conscious of the downgrading of physical function until something happens to draw our attention to it. It may be an injury or chronic back or joint pain that forces us to give up an activity that we love or having to be off work. Something generally forces us to wake up and pay attention.
We don’t break down all at once – muscle and joint loss of function is a gradual process and sneaks up on us. We lose a bit here and a bit there and we become weaker and stiffer by degrees. The end result is we stop playing a sport or doing an activity we used to love. We hire someone to mow the lawn and or do the things that we used to do ourselves. This loss of function, the muscle and joint pain and the subsequent disability is happening at younger and younger ages, twenties, thirties, forties.
Some of us know what we should be doing – proper exercise that works the muscular system and we are aware that we should be taking an active role in maintaining our muscle and joint health. For almost all of us exercise is something we should do, but choose not to. However in the back of our minds we may wonder – “If this is the way things are now, what are they going to be like this years or even decades from now?”
Our bodies are designed to be active – very active. We are meant to run, climb, lift, reach, and walk long distances but instead we spend most of our day sitting in a chair. Without proper exercise, all of the essential elements of functional fitness will decline. The answer – what we need to do. We need to stay strong. Our muscle strength is critical for us to retain our physical function. It holds up our skeleton and support and protects our spine and our joints.
We need to take an active role in this in keeping our muscular system strong as there is simple not enough of this activity in our modern day lives anymore. And we need to keep it that way with a proper exercise program that contains mostly strength training exercise.
What we are all after is a fully functional strong body that doesn’t hurt when we participate in a variety of activities. This also means we can do all the things we enjoy and want to do for as long as possible.