Exercise. What Exercise Will Do For You! Exercise does so many great things for you, that you may not be aware of them all. Exercise is a simple solution for stress, weight problems,...

What Exercise Will Do For You!

Exercise does so many great things for you, that you may not be aware of them all. Exercise is a simple solution for stress, weight problems, depression, menstrual cramps, boredom, and conditioning of the heart. It builds self-confidence and self esteem and feels great. Most people have two complaints about exercise. It's boring! It hurts! If you feel that way, it's probably because you haven't tried enough different activities to find one that you enjoy. Give yourself and your body a chance to discover that you get more fun from moving then from sitting around. BUT take time to read Cool Nurse of course!

Finding a sport is an important start. There two important things to consider when you're choosing an athletic activity. How much movement does it involve, and how much fun is it for you? The only way exercise can help you is if you enjoy it enough to do it several times a week.

frog uni-cycleSports sometimes come into the scene in cycles or fads. You may want to get involved in a particular activity just because it's the one that everyone else is doing. Going for a popular sport can be a good way to get involved in athletics, but it can also be frustrating, discouraging and sometimes expensive. If something like that happens to you, look around until you find a sport that you can do and one that you will enjoy. Trends don't last for long, but the effects of a good exercise program do. Also, it may take you a while to discover how good you are at a sport. When you find a sport that appeals to you, you can't expect to be great when you just start out. Stick with it until you get past that awkward stage to a point where you're having fun, or until you're absolutely positive you'll never catch on. Any sport will have its advantages and disadvantages. You'll discover on your own what they are for you.

What's Stopping You?

Some teenagers dislike any exercise. They've heard about how much exercise can do for them, but for some reason they don't get the message. The reason may be that they've been getting other messages that make exercise seems pointless, risky, or painful. If you're not particulate excited about working out - even though you know what a difference it will make in the way you look and feel - maybe you've heard too many discouraging words about exercise. Here are a couple of them, as well as reasons you shouldn't let them stopped you.

"Running or other strenuous exercise is dangerous. You can hurt yourself."

Sure you can hurt yourself. Some athletes are always turning up with sprains, cuts, strains, dislocations and even fractures. But their injuries don't come from what they're doing - they come from the way they do it. They jump in too quickly, take on too much, or keep at it for too long a time.

You can stay safe by warming up before you begin. Stretching helps prevent sprains and strains. If you are new to the sport, don't try to keep up with friends who have been doing it for years. Build up to their speed gradually. Make sure you have proper equipment and that it fits properly. Safety gear can be expensive, but that bicycle helmet for example, is a lot less expensive than a brain injury. If you get hurt, see your health care provider right away. Never try to "work through an injury" even if your coach advises you to do it. Tell the coach you'd rather wait for your health care provider's instructions.

Marathons are not for growing bodies. So, they are not the best exercise for teenagers. The10 K is the maximum distance you should run while you are still developing according to most health care providers. Marathons take too much energy and nutrients from young bones and cells that are needed for growth, so you're better off waiting until you reach your full height. Then you will have energy to spare to cover that distance.

"Exercise has to hurt. No pain, no gain."

You don't have to hurt your body to help it, and anyone who says that you do is leading you to trouble. Pain during or after exercise indicates that something is wrong. Either you are overdoing it, or you injured yourself. Listen to your body! All it takes to get something from exercise is effort. Making an effort means getting your body to move faster or work harder it than it does under normal conditions. How much harder? Enough to feel yourself breathing harder (but not losing breath and gasping for air) and to raise your pulse. A high pulse means that your heart is getting a work out too.

Checking Your Pulse

Before you start exercising, check your pulse. You can find your pulse by taking the index and middle fingers of your right hand and pressing them lightly over your left wrist, just below your hand on the left side. Don't use your thumb to take it, because it has a tiny pulse of its own that will confuse your count. You will need a watch with a second hand to count this, count it for 30 seconds, and then double that number.

Once you've found your pulse, register how fast it is moving. You should feel it beat about 70 times in one minute while your body is at rest. Once you've been exercising for 10 minutes, pause briefly to check your pulse again. You should feel it thump at least 100 times in one minute. If not, you have to put more effort into your work out until it does. If it is higher than 100, as high as 150 or more you are pushing yourself to hard, so slow down. You will get there soon enough.

What You Can Expect From Exercise

You'll feel good right away. Exercise works on the part of the brain that determines what kind of mood you're in. No matter how rotten you feel when you start out, a good run, swim, bike ride, roller blade, or walk will cheer you up. If you're already feeling good, you'll even feel better. After a few weeks your body will be firmer and more flexible. Your pulse will be slower when you're not working out; a sign that your heart is working at a healthier pace. You'll look better and the difference will start to show in your shape, your face, and your outlook on life.

What You Can't Expect From Exercise

You can't expect to look like models you see in magazines, television and advertisements. Let's put it this way -- if you went to take voice lessons, you might expect your voice to improve, but you wouldn't expect to sound like your favorite singer. The same goes for your shape, which is exactly how it would should be. You'll end up with your body in shape -- not with the shape of anyone else.

A Work Out That Works

The word exercise covers a lot of different activities, from walking to weight lifting. The best exercise is any kind that keeps her whole body moving for at least 20 minutes, makes you breathe harder than usual, makes you sweat, and gets your heart beating faster. A good exercise routine involves these four things:

Warming up
Cooling down

This softens and relaxes your muscles, preparing them to handle the extra stress you put on them during your work out. Well-stretched joints are less likely to strain, sprain, or break. Five minutes of stretching could prevent five weeks in a cast.

Warming up
Before you begin working out full tilt, starts slowly, using the same motions you'll be using when you're really exercising. By starting out easy, your giving your blood time to make its way to your muscles. The blood is fuel for those muscles, and if you don't give it a chance to get to them, they might pooped out on you. That is no fun at all.

aerobicsThis is when you work your body so much that you feel a difference in your pulse rate and in the way you are breathing. During conditioning, you're working out the most important muscle of all -- your heart. Exercise that increases your pulse rate (makes your heart beat faster) is the kind that has all of the benefits mentioned before, like controlling your appetite and making you feel terrific. It also has another benefit. It makes your body burn energy, not just when working out, but afterwards too. This helps you prevent putting on weight. People who don't get conditioning exercises end up storing much more of what they eat as fat than people who work out often. The reason for this is that muscles which are in good shape from conditioning use of a lot of energy. Fat uses hardly any energy at all, while a muscle at rest needs more calories. That is because muscles perform work, holding your skin firm and helping you move. Here are some examples of conditioning sports:

Field hockey
Walking quickly

Cooling down

Don't bring yourself to a sudden stop when you've finished your work out. Your body isn't prepared to quit as quickly as you might be, and a result of a sudden stop could be cramps, dizziness, or even fainting. Slow to a stop by lightly doing whatever activity you've been doing at a slower pace. Once you've stopped, do a few stretches to complete the cool down.

Warning: Never get into a hot shower until you have cooled down completely. Here's why: While you're working out, your blood circulates to the muscles you are using. During your cool down, your blood begins to circulate more evenly throughout your body. Hot water makes the blood come to your skin's surface. If you get under hot water before you've cooled down and have gotten the blood flow back to normal, your blood will be confused. It will rush to your skin, suddenly leaving the rest of you without enough to work normally. You could faint as a result. The shower is not a great place to faint. You could easily crack your skull, break another bone, or drown in the shower. Now that is embarrassing!

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