Exercise and Sport. Most of us, keep fit enthusiasts excepted, will sooner or later, suffer from the dawning realization that our mirrors are telling us that our bottoms are sagging, our stomachs are bulging and our faces are getting puffy.
Some will just accept natures way and carry on with their usual lifestyle but there will be others that want to regain a trim and toned body and that feeling of well being that comes with being fit.
No matter what age you are when you become aware of the dreaded signs that your body is not the temple of excellence that you expected it to remain. Sloth, bad habits and diet will have their way.
They will affect even a teenager’s body in just the same way as it will with any older person.
Having the right genes plays a huge part in our ability to delay the deteriorating effects of a bad lifestyle but sooner or later the body will begin give out ever-stronger signals that action should be taken to restore it to the way it was.
So what are the options?
The first thought that comes to many peoples mind is jogging. It does not require any expensive equipment, just trainers and any old clothes to suit the weather and can be carried out at any convenient time of the day or even night.
OK that’s fine for those who prefer their own company but if you suffer from loneliness or just don’t want to be alone when pounding the highways and byways of your neighborhood you will have to find a friend who shares your dedication to getting fit.
Incidentally there is a school of thought that considers jogging one of the worst activities for causing joint problems and associated pain.
Another option is to equip a home gym if you have the spare space.
Whether you buy just a few weights and maybe find a second hand simple treadmill or even if you can afford a comprehensive multi-gym machine it will still cost you.
As with all exercise regimes you will have to have the will power to continue with what can eventually become a boring routine, particularly so if budget and space consideration limit your choice of equipment.
Again great if you have company to help keep you going as listening to music on an I-pod or watching telly while you go through your routine can pall after a while. If you are a mother at least you haven’t the problem of finding a baby sitter.
If you are a sociable type join a gym.
You can keep your interest up by trying out the variety of machines that a well run gym should be equipped with, take advantage of the good advice on hand from the staff and probably find a new circle of friends with the same interests which should help you sustain your efforts.
Subscriptions vary but are usually affordable.
This is a great option unless the whole idea of exercise without seeing a tangible result after each session doesn’t appeal and the idea of running, lifting weights and other similar gym type exercises fills you with total boredom.
So lets look at Sport.
All sports have a definite objective and that is to win or lose at the end of a session.
I cannot think of a recognized sport in which women don’t take part, even the roughest and toughest such as Rugby Union and League, American Football. Wrestling and Boxing have ladies teams competing against each other. Male or female, there are very few bars to taking up any sport you fancy.
Anybody can take part in any sport; the question is whether to take up a team sport or an individual sport.
Both will have clubs and associations and with few exceptions will welcome new members irrespective of their ability and most have an emphasis on the social side of their activities so making new friends and acquaintances with common interests is an added bonus.
The competitive atmosphere generated in sports clubs can become infectious and is a spur to increasing physical fitness to better ones performance on the playing field, court or wherever the sport is taking place.
For those who cannot get on with fast ball games such as Tennis, Squash or Racquetball there are many other options open.
Fencing, with three disciplines (foil, epee and sabre) requires good reflexes and fast feet, Wrestling needs application to technique good balance and strength. Then there is Judo, various martial arts, archery, boxing and a large variety of athletic pursuits. Football of whatever kind is so popular that a team to suit any standard of play however poor, is likely to be located nearby.
My Dad who is 70 still plays a two-hour competitive game of tennis three times a week and has recently taken up golf once a week so he will have a sport when he is too old for tennis.
He still contrives to get out of taking the family’s little Shih-Tzu dog for a short daily walk because he says that just walking is boring
Another alternative for those who find road and gym work tedious and boring is to take up swimming.
Clubs organize races, water polo, sub aqua and other water activities that also require a good level of fitness and provide competition, companionship and interest, as is the case with every sport.
So for that trim and toned body and to feel good without the drudgery of jogging or the dread of boredom in the gym try taking up a sport.
There is a sport suitable for every one whatever their age, shape, standard or disability.
“~Sport for all’ means exactly what it says!
Jacqueline Lloyd is the author of this article which appears in her definitive website Hot Exercise http://hotexercise.com