Health - Movin’ On Down the Road

We sit behind a computer. We sit and watch T.V. We sit and watch their waist lines expand. We complain and say, “Starting Monday I’m going to start on a diet.” Monday rolls around and we just can’t say no to that favorite piece of candy or maybe a Lamar’s donut.
Now is the time we need to get up and start moving. Obesity is on the rise and is killing people no matter what race, nationality, or sexual persuasion. I won’t tell you that it is going to be easy or that you will loss 15 pounds this month. I will tell you that sitting there thinking about it won’t get you started.
To get started, write down some realistic goals. Everyone is different. Small goals are easier to achieve. This way you will not be overwhelmed. Find a friend or two with common goals and work out with them. Peer pressure is a wonderful tool to help keep you motivated. Maybe find a picture of what you use to look like and place it where you can see it everyday. Find a support group in your area. Talk to someone who keeps you thinking positive.
Your next step is to actually start. If you’re new to the exercise scene, make sure you check with your doctor first. Walking is a great way to ease into exercise, but don’t overdo that, either. That will set you up for failure. Make sure you are in a safe place to walk. There are many beautiful parks in Kansas City that you can walk in. Swimming is another beneficial exercise that takes all the body weight off your joints. People with bad knees or arthritis can do water aerobics without pain and decrease the possibility of injury.
Once you’re a few weeks into your program, it’s time to add resistance training. You can use bands, dumbbells, machines, or even body weight. If you’re afraid to go to the gym, buy inexpensive equipment and use it in your home. There are videos or posters on how to use the equipment. Check out community centers; they don’t charge as much as a regular gym. They also have certified personal trainers who can assist you with the equipment. You can always hire a trainer to get a weight training program set up for you. The community centers also offer aerobics classes. You might have to pay up to $40 for a six-week session, but it’s well worth the money. Your endurance level will increase and your breathing and pulse will decrease. Both of these are good things.
After 4-6 weeks of working out, you should have more energy and more confidence. You’re feeling great about yourself. It’s time to step out and try something new. There are many different organizations out there depending on your interest, such as KC Wave for swimming, OutDoors KC for hiking, or IGBO-International Gay Bowlers Organization.
There are so many different ways to get active. Dancing is a great way to show off your new body and burn a lot of calories at the same time. Try taking a few dancing lessons with a professional: You’ll be amazed how much work actually goes into ballroom dancing.

You probably won’t be ready to compete this year in the Gay Games or the OutGames, but there’s always next year. So get up off the sofa and put down the donut. Put on your walking shoes and get started today.
I am group exercise instructor at Southwest Boulevard Family Health Care Clinic and a personal trainer certified by the National Exercise Trainers Association (NETA.) I have been helping people with their nutrition and exercise needs for three years. I have lost 81 pounds myself and still holding strong. Contact me at the clinic, 913-722-3100, ext 221.

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