Your health: Are you investing in your most important asset?
The popularity of practical, down-to-earth investment guides like The Barefoot Investorhave taught us one thing. Regularly putting aside small amounts of money can really add up in the long-run. You could say the same thing about your health. Doing a bit of regular exercise pays off. Some of the big benefits of keeping fit, flexible and healthy are:
Reduces the risk of chronic diseases heart attack and stroke
Helps you manage your weight and avoid serious conditions like type 2 diabetes
Prevents injury by developing strong muscles and bones
Boosts your brainpower and memory
Supports your mental health and helps manage anxiety and depression
Improves your complexion.
Exercise keeps you young!
Keeping active is something you should do at every age. Unfortunately, many of us fall into a sedentary lifestyle as we get older. We find ourselves in desk-bound jobs. Or because we’re juggling the demands of work and family, we feel we don’t have the time to exercise.
Fitting it all in can seem too hard. It’s much easier to flop onto the couch and switch on the TV at the end of the day. But exercise can be the secret to staying young. According to health experts, even light to moderate exercise helps us live longer.
What’s the ‘right’ exercise for your age?
The Australian Department of Health guidelines include:
Some exercise is better than doing nothing
Be active on most, if not all, days every week
Each week, you should aim to exercise between 150 to 300 minutes (2 ½ to 5 hours) of moderate intensity physical activity or 75 to 150 minutes (1 ¼ to 2 ½ hours) of vigorous intensity physical activity
Do muscle strengthening activities on at least 2 days each week
Minimise the amount of time spent in prolonged sitting
Break up long periods of sitting as often as possible.
Of course, the type of exercise that you did at 18 may not suit your body at 40. There’s no avoiding the fact that your body changes over the years. Hormonal changes and basic ‘wear and tear’ affect your muscles and your bones. For women, menopause causes huge changes in muscle mass and bone density. Unless you keep active, you’ll naturally lose around 3-5% muscle mass every ten years. That’s a loss of about 30% over your lifetime. It’s really a matter of “use it or lose it”.
Pilates helps future-proof your body
Being fit and active all my life is a BIG bonus. But even though I’ve been a devotee of exercise from a young age, I have to be realistic. As my body is getting older, I’ve had to adjust my exercise to suit. We can’t all be marathon runners at 70! But sticking to a regular exercise regime, combined with healthy eating, is a sure way to future-proof your body against the inevitable decline of an ageing body. And Pilates is the ideal exercise for building strength and keeping your body flexible.
Pilates focuses on maintaining a healthy and flexible spine.Being able to move freely and without pain or discomfort is a sure way to feel and look younger
A Restorative Pilates class is an effective way to reduce stress. It can make you feel more happy and more relaxed
Small-group Pilates sessions ensure your teacher gets to know you and your body. They learn to understand your limitations and can adjust the exercises to suit you.
Feel strong, feel more alive with Pilates
I love seeing the changes people make to their body once they decide to commit to a little bit of exercise a few times a week. I’ve no doubt Pilates can help everyone regain strength and flexibility – and who wouldn’t want that?