METRO PLUS

Workout your way to fitness

REGULAR EXERCISE is the cheapest and most sustaining medicine that can be prescribed for a number of illnesses. Fresh air, the right foods, rest, and regular exercise can add quality years to your life. Exercise is the most vital component of any fitness program. Diet alone won't help you to tone the body. With an exercise programme you will discover that it is a sure way to improve the overall quality of your life. In fact those who exercise regularly are younger looking and have fewer health problems.

Obesity is probably the commonest malady of our time. A regular exercise is a must for those who are over weight. It will burn off excess body fat. No weight loss programme is worth if it does not include a well-planned exercise regime. High blood pressure can be kept normal in many cases with nothing more than a regular work out. High levels of blood cholesterol are strongly associated with heart attacks. Regular exercise helps lower cholesterol levels.

Diabetes is another disease, which is easier to control with regular exercise. Many mild diabetics, when put on a good exercise plan and dietary control, may not require any medication. Even for those who are bed ridden and seriously ill, keeping the joints and muscles moving under the instructions of a physiotherapist goes a long way in speeding up recovery and preventing muscle weakness and bone fragility that often goes with prolonged period of bed rest.

Large organisations and companies for maintaining high fitness level of their employees have invested in gymnasiums and exercise centres at their campus.

This provides a means for employees to work out at their convenience and save the organisation several times that expenditure in terms of health bills, otherwise caused by the absence of exercise.

The reason why exercise makes you feel wonderfully alive is because it triggers the release of endorphins chemicals in the brain that make you feel generally happier, calmer and more clear headed.

You do not have to invest in expensive equipment to make exercise a part of your life. There are plenty of different forms of activity that can easily be incorporated into your routine, like walking, aerobics, jogging, dancing, skipping etc. Regular exercise is one important factor to be followed to achieve general well being.

Is exercise ever harmful?

There are few situations in which exercise becomes dangerous. It is advisable to get into exercise programmes gradually and build one self up slowly. If one feels worse after the exercise than before, then surely some thing is wrong. For those who suffer from serious medical problems, exercise must be under taken under the advice and supervision of trained personnel. For those over 35 years who have never exercised before should consult a physician and a thorough medical check up is necessary before starting any new exercise routine.

Health clubs

Mushrooming of various fitness centres reflects the awareness and need of exercise is on increase in present generation. Many of these centres are run by professional fitness trainers and equipped with standard equipment where as some centres are run by quack with cheap unscientific equipments with the only motive of making a quick buck and causing more harm.

Aerobic workout combines all the elements of a good workout with the fun of exercising with a group to great music.

Aerobic classes cater for various fitness levels from the very fit to those looking to improve their health. We are lucky to have many good health clubs in the heart of Kochi.

One such centre is the Physique Fitness Circuit at Girinagar. Ms Bindu Prakash, who runs this centre claims it is the first fully equipped aerobic studio in Kochi. Qualified instructors, trained by Reebok, run this centre on a special wooden floor as per Reebok standards.

Other than aerobic studio they have a badminton court, steam bath, full fledged weight-training classes with a wide range of exercise equipment.

Pravin and Sijo, upcoming software professionals, first play badminton and then work out in the gym to relax and to be energetic since workout helps them to release stress. Both male and female personal trainers are available throughout the working hours.

Weight training is the method of wide selection of free weights and machine weights. Mr Rahul, who is regular visitor to this health club says: "The friendly experienced and qualified team of instructors are there to give advice and encouragement at each step."

Workout your way to fitness

They also have weight management programmes, which suit individual needs with personnel attention of qualified dietician.

Mr Ashok, an engineering student feels he is obese and working out will help him to lose his excess weight.

Regular exercise and a healthy diet will keep you looking and feeling your best. It reduces stress and boosts your energy levels.

At Physique Fitness Circuit they promise to provide a great environment for you to achieve your personal fitness goals.

Pointers to exercise

A BEST health investment that a person can make is to do 20-30 minutes of exercise.

All that is necessary is brisk walking, swimming, jogging, aerobics, or a game.

A five-minute warming up period and an equally long cooling off phase is necessary during each session.

Choose some thing that you will enjoy doing regularly for half an hour at least three times a week

Whatever exercise you decide to do always start gently and build up slowly and surely. If you don't like to exercise alone, try joining with your spouse or your friend.

Try to choose more than one type of exercise. Variety will help to keep your exercise program interesting and enable you to work on different parts of your body.

Choose your physical activity so that it matches your particular fitness need. For example, try yoga for improving flexibility, weight training for strength, brisk walking or swimming for endurance.

Find physical activities that free the mind.

Always wear comfortable clothing and shoes while exercising.