What does an everyday athlete look like?
An everyday athlete is strong, flexible, and physically resilient. He/She can carry groceries to and from their car, weed a garden, plant a tree, mow a yard, and enjoy a hike in the park.
An everyday athlete confidently stands in a rocking boat, or jumps across a puddle or muddy patch at the soccer field. The everyday athlete can throw a football, shoot a hoop, or toss a horse shoe.
The everyday athlete looks for opportunity to maintain basic physical fitness. The everyday athlete strives for enough fitness to perform daily activities without fear of a sudden injury or nagging soreness for weeks.
Benefits of Basic Fitness
Physical activity has mountains of research showing benefits in nearly all conditions human’s suffer such as Hypertension, Diabetes, Cancer, Congestive Heart Failure, Obesity, Depression, Anxiety, chronic back pain, fibromyalgia and dementia. Beyond diseases, everyday athletes have greater emotional stability, better sleep, better sex, more creativity and productivity in other areas of life.
The everyday athlete enjoys better health because commitment to an active lifestyle fits with normal human physiology. The human body was built to move up to 12 miles daily. Our cardiovascular systems (heart/lungs) and brain thrive, adapt, and improve functionally with increasing activity.
The human body adapts to physical demands by improving strength, sharpening balance, and maintaining and improving blood flow.
Becoming an Everyday Athlete
Convinced of the benefits of being an everyday athlete?
Becoming an everyday athlete simply entails increasing daily physical activity. Joining a gym is NOT required. There are many very short 5-10 minute, body-weight calisthenic routines, one can perform 3-4 days weekly with dramatic benefit.
Easy examples and ideas include:
- 10 air squats every 20 min at work
- Walk 20 min 3-4x weekly
- Kettle-Bell workouts (5 min 3 x weekly)
- Crunches 3×15, Air Squats 3×10, Pushups 3×5 (No rest between sets, increase as tolerated-planks ok instead of Pushups)
- Taking stairs
- Gardening (Digging, cutting, planting, pulling, pushing, squatting, bending, kneeling, etc.)
- Raking leaves
- wade fishing
- kite-surfing, surfing, wake boarding
- Tai-Chi, Chi Gong, Yoga
- Weight lifting 1 different body area 3 x weekly
- Golf, tennis, Frisbee, Soccer, Softball, etc.
- Trail Hiking
- Beach cleaning
While the list appears a bit random, consider the energy expended with each. Engaging in any combination on a regular basis will improve strength, flexibility, stamina, and longevity.
Do you get bored easy?
Don’t have a lot of time?
Cost of membership?
….bad back, sore feet, out-of-shape, work conflict, too old, health problems, chronic pain….please I’ve heard them all.
Pick something. Add to the list. Combine activities, vary intensity, vary repetitions, but consistently DO SOMETHING.
So many lament the cost of health care. So many “Wish” they could have better health and lose weight. DO SOMETHING.
Want to get off medications? Decrease reliance on doctors and restore some vitality? DO SOMETHING
Remember all research on physical activity suggests DOING SOMETHING, NEARLY ANYTHING, gains a large majority of the benefits of exercise.
Taking the First Step
Set some goals, make plans, and live life. Regardless of your current activity level write down small goals and take the first step. Imagine accomplishing goals and create small simple steps with long-long term objectives in mind. When you reach one goal make another.
Remember everyday athletes do not require necessarily work out daily or own a gym membership. They do seek opportunity for activity. They do assess their lifestyle searching for moments to expand their ability, clear their mind, and engage their body.
I hope you will share this idea with friends and loved ones. I hope you will share your own favorite work-outs or everyday athletic events.