Fitness Tips from Fitness 2J2: the MeTaWeTan Bootcamp
- Joel Pedersen | October 18, 2014
September/October has brought back Fitness 2J2 and the MeTaWeTan Bootcamp to St.Mary’s Health&Wellness Center in Saskatoon. This is the fourth year we have been able to provide a no-cost Fitness Bootcamp for all levels of fitness and ability. The group discussed some of the reasons we want to exercise: to grow muscle; get toned; and lose some inches.
Most of us have known someone in our family or close to us who has been affected by heart disease, diabetes, or cancer. Exercise is one of the most effective tools we can use to fight back and prevent.
I recently read an interesting article on how it can also improve your mind. Harvard Med School psychiatrist John Ratey, author of the book, Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain. writes about how exercise is the single best thing you can do for your brain in terms of memory, mood, and learning. “Ten minutes of activity changes your brain”. So If your Kokum or Moshum and Ratey are not enough motivation for you, here are ways that exercise can boost your brainpower.
Have you ever gone for a run or a jog and felt that ‘runners high’? It really does exist, and if you're willing to shift into higher intensity mode, try some interval training: Run, bike, or swim as fast as you can for 30 to 40 seconds and then reduce your speed to a slower pace for one to two minutes before sprinting again. Repeat four times for a total of five sprints. Mild or lower intensity activity like a walk or a canoe can help keep your brain fit and active. Helping with memory loss and keeping skills like vocabulary retrieval strong. The Alzheimer's Research Center says exercise is one of the best weapons against the disease. It is suggested that a daily walk or jog could lower the risk of Alzheimer's, or at least slow its impact once it has begun.
A walk or jog for 30-45 minutes can reduce stress and depression by increasing levels of ‘soothing’ brain chemicals. Researchers found that those stressed out people who exercised vigorously for an average of 45 minutes over a three-day period, had cells that showed fewer signs of aging compared to those who were stressed and inactive.
The level of brain chemicals can be increased by exercise. Ratey explains that you're challenging your brain even more, when you have to think about coordination of different movements while exercising. A study found that high school students scored better on tests and tasks after doing 10 minutes of a challenging fitness exercise, compared to 10 minutes of regular exercise. Those who hadn't exercised at all scored the worst.
Most of us don't need to significantly change our body to get a confidence boost from exercise. Exercise will improve self-esteem, body image and mind.
Check out these other tips from Fitness 2J2:
- Fitness challenge in Stanley Mission
- Dealing with muscle soreness
- Warm up for your run/jog
- Training vs working out
- Achieving your fitness goals