Month: March 2014

Exercise And Play

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Often times, when children return from playing, they look quite exhausted and ready for a nap. This is the most accurate description, and also quite the truth, as playing is hard work. It’s exhausting to the mind and body of the child, and it plays an important role in helping them to become productive and healthy.

The role of play and exercise in the life of a young child will provide them with several benefits. Exercise of the body is a very important part of keeping the young body fit as it grows into an adult body. Once we reach adulthood, if we’ve had the benefit of exercise and play, we all tend to continue that habit well into our adult years.

Play is also good in the form of participating in organized sports, coordinated play times, and being a member of a large group during all of these types of activities. Playing on this level will teach us how to interact with peers and perform as a team with our fellow players. In today’s business world, these skills are essential.

What we learn in body language, coping skills, and the interaction of the mind and body during our interaction with others is invaluable. When we learn this skills to the fullest, not only will we learn how to get along with others, but we will also learn how to interact better with ourselves.

Although interacting with ourselves seems like a rather pointless exercise, it is actually an important part of maintaining the best sense of health and wellness. There will always be times when our bodies are trying to tell us things about our physical or mental condition, which we will simply refuse to listen to.

Through exercise and play, we will also learn what our limitations are – both physical and mental. At times of play, you’ll see children and young adults push themselves to their limit and beyond. As children, we are all more able to distinguish between a real limit versus what society itself calls our limits.

For children and young adults, the pressures of the world don’t affect them near as much as it does adults. Children have a much better state of mind and peace, unlike adults that have let the outside influence the body and mind, which will do little more than becoming a dominant factor of time.

As you can tell, the benefits that are gained from exercise and play time as children, will benefit us for the rest of our lives. As adults, we all too often forget how important both exercise and play are.

Normally, we want to rush children into their daily responsibilities, forgetting that at their age they need play and interaction for their young minds.

Exercise And Play

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Five components of physical fitness

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Physical fitness is the ability to function effectively throughout your workday, perform your usual other activities and still have enough energy left over to handle any extra stresses or emergencies which may arise.

The components of physical fitness are:

* Cardiorespiratory (CR) endurance – the efficiency with which the body delivers oxygen and nutrients needed for muscular activity and transports waste products from the cells.

* Muscular strength – the greatest amount of force a muscle or muscle group can exert in a single effort.

* Muscular endurance – the ability of a muscle or muscle group to perform repeated movements with a sub-maximal force for extended periods of times.

* Flexibility – the ability to move the joints or any group of joints through an entire, normal range of motion.

* Body composition – the percentage of body fat a person has in comparison to his or her total body mass.

Improving the first three components of fitness listed above will have a positive impact on body composition and will result in less fat. Excessive body fat detracts from the other fitness components, reduces performance, detracts from appearance, and negatively affects your health.

Factors such as speed, agility, muscle power, eye-hand coordination, and eye-foot coordination are classified as components of “motor” fitness. These factors most affect your athletic ability. Appropriate training can improve these factors within the limits of your potential. A sensible weight loss and fitness program seeks to improve or maintain all the components of physical and motor fitness through sound, progressive, mission specific physical training.

Principles of Exercise

Adherence to certain basic exercise principles is important for developing an effective program. The same principles of exercise apply to everyone at all levels of physical training, from the Olympic-caliber athlete to the weekend jogger.

These basic principles of exercise must be followed.

Regularity

To achieve a training effect, you must exercise often. You should exercise each of the first four fitness components at least three times a week. Infrequent exercise can do more harm than good. Regularity is also important in resting, sleeping, and following a sensible diet.

Progression

The intensity (how hard) and/or duration (how long) of exercise must gradually increase to improve the level of fitness.

Balance

To be effective, a program should include activities that address all the fitness components, since overemphasizing any one of them may hurt the others.

Variety

Providing a variety of activities reduces boredom and increases motivation and progress.

Specificity

Training must be geared toward specific goals. For example, people become better runners if their training emphasizes running. Although swimming is great exercise, it does not improve a 2-mile-run time as much as a running program does.

Recovery

A hard day of training for a given component of fitness should be followed by an easier training day or rest day for that component and/or muscle group(s) to help permit recovery. Another way to allow recovery is to alternate the muscle groups exercised every other day, especially when training for strength and/or muscle endurance.

Overload

The work load of each exercise session must exceed the normal demands placed on the body in order to bring about a training effect.

Five components of physical fitness

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Low Fat Diets – How Effective Is The Low Fat Diet Plan?

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Are low-fat diets effective? Personally, I would say no. While this still doesn’t give license for everyone to dust off the deep fryer, it simply means that fat doesn’t play quite so large of a role in harboring diseases as previously thought by researchers.

According to a 10 year long study of 49,000 postmenopausal women nationwide, low-fat diets had virtually no effect on the incidence of heart disease, colorectal cancer, stroke, or breast cancer as opposed to the higher fat content of a “more standard” American diet. This news has certainly come as a shock for many since the exact opposite was touted. If we, as a society, were to eat less fats then the occurrence of heart disease and various cancers would surely plummet.

What has also shocked many is that eating a high-carb, low-fat diet will not raise triglycerides, or elevate chances of developing diabetes. And even though fat has over double the calories per gram as protein or carbohydrates, eating a low-fat diet will not help those needing to lose weight.

One piece of evidence that does happen to coincide with past assertions is that this same study also illustrated the fact that diets high in saturated fat and trans-fat do greatly elevate cholesterol levels and raise one’s chances of getting heart disease. Thus, it is still my opinion that the healthiest way to eat is to find balance in your diet.

Next, it would be well advised not to eat more fats than are generally recommended by doctors and don’t eat less fats than is recommended. For active folks, a common estimate for one’s daily fat requirements should equal roughly 20% of one’s total calories.

For the heavier set, I wouldn’t cut any lower than 15%. So, if you were to eat a diet high in saturated fat, then you could potentially develop heart disease due to the elevated cholesterol levels. This is a fairly common occurrence for the strict adherents of the Atkins diet model. While they may lose some weight, they are often left with soaring blood cholesterol levels.

On the other hand, if one were to eat a strict low-fat diet then they could also be increasing their chances for heart disease due to their diet’s lack of essential fatty acids. So, it is indeed important that balance is achieved when nutrition and your health is at stake. If one becomes too lax or too restrictive, then you will be unintentionally sabotaging your heart amongst other things and that could eventually cost you your life.

Low Fat Diets – How Effective Is The Low Fat Diet Plan?

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