Taking care of our bodies

Grad school takes a toll. After some minor/ongoing health issues, I have begun to realize that our bodies are basically like cars. We only have them for so many miles, they need fuel, and repairs. Some cars break down and die before their time, some last 300,000 miles, like my uncle’s Suburban. Granted, that car is also a miracle of auto-science and duct tape.

I know that whether I exercise or not, I will eventually die. But I want to be as healthy as I can while I am alive. While I may not have as much time as Dara Torres or Lance Armstrong, one of my goals this semester is to workout at least 3 times a week. That may be 27 times less a week than these two, but it’s a lot better than the 0 of last semester! Still, they are quite inspiring.

What inspires you to exercise, to live in healthy ways? Is it worth the effort? Do you need a personal trainer to see real results?

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About shenpa warrior

"Patience is not learned in safety." View all posts by shenpa warrior

15 responses to “Taking care of our bodies

  • Steve

    Ha, yeah, if only I had a nutritionist, trainer, and 8 hours a day to work out instead of sitting on my can commenting on blogs, haha.
    I work out for all the reasons you mention, having at about 25 realizing that I needed to get into shape. Now that I am a few years into it, I love it! I’m in the best shape ever, am a few body fat percentages from abs like Dara, and most importantly, it’s the best stress reliever. When I leave the gym, it’s like I can take on anything and nothing is important! haha.

  • Allie

    I recommend yoga adam. Especially as we get older it’s important to maintain good balance and flexibility. My Mister has started doing yoga a little bit (at home, he wouldn’t go to a class at this point in his life).

    I haven’t run outside for about a year, with the move and everything I’ve gotten out of the habit, and now my running route is no longer accessible. Nothing feels like a cool morning run. Maybe we need to bring back team fisher.

  • adam

    What Steve, you don’t workout for 8 hours a day? How can you get in shape then?:) Then again, I don’t have a goal to have sub-2% bodyfat or whatever these to have. Sub-10% would be fine too…

    Allie-I’ve thought about that actually! It seems to be a great stress reliever as well, and practically cured the anxiety issues out of one of my clients.

  • Papa D

    Adam, I need to lose about 30 pounds still, but I am doing better than I have done in a long time. I don’t have the time or money to spend on making it a top priority, but I also like where I am and where I am going.

  • hanndallfam

    When I did my student teaching, I taught my students that we don’t try to be healthy to prolong our lives, because that’s just not something we have control over. Even Lance Armstrong could get in a car accident tomorrow and die. But that we stay healthy to improve our Quality of life. Exercise releases endorphines that make us feel good and relieve stress. Not to mention the fact that I love being able to have races in the backyard with my boys and jump on the trampoline with them. I hope that I can go on runs with them when they’re teenagers

  • hanndallfam

    ….and training for the soccer team (or whatever). But, I will never be spending hours a day in the gym. Even with a good thing like exercise I think “moderation in all things” applies. Every extra hour you are at the gym, is an extra hour you are not with your family or other responsibilities. I’m going for healthy and able, not ripped and insane. I think there is a line somewhere in between those two where it changes from being about your health and happiness and becomes more about vanity. (Sorry…only part of this comment was posted on the last one.)

  • Mary F

    Tango is good, and, if I have the proper partners, is surprisingly cardiovascular (also helps with balance, core strength, and is good for cognitive functioning). Other kinds of dancing that I do are good for cardiovascular health, flexibility, and muscle strength in areas that support back bends and such. And yoga is supportive of it all. I also do knee alignment training from time to time. And crunches. PIlates ab work, too. Good stuff.

  • adam

    handall – Agreed, I don’t want to be insane either! I’m still working on the whole “exercise makes us feel better” idea though. Usually it makes me feel tired and sore. I probably haven’t been doing it enough however.

  • tara

    did lance armstrong win the marathon? i realize that’s a question and not an answer to your questions, but i’m a little bewildered. i thought he rode bikes. does one man really need to dominate every sport out there? sheesh…and holy heck! since when do chicks have 6/8 packs? isn’t anything left to the male part of the species anymore? i’m already behind enough as it is…

  • breejones

    I had a strange heart condition (kind of like an irregular heartbeat) that happened last March that was directly related to me not doing enough cardiovascular exercise. Since then I’ve taken up running and I have my first half marathon this weekend. It’s kind of embarassing that it took some kind of medical condition to motivate me, but it did the job and I’m really happy with it. I run between 25 to 30 miles a week, I have tons of energy, and I had to buy all new clothes because mine were too big. It’s also been great to start running in races. I never thought I could be competitive like I was in high school sports but this is a good way to find competition with myself, trying to get better. So to answer your question, for me it’s totally been worth the effort and I didn’t need a personal trainer. Fortunately, I had my husband to do it with so we were good to keep each other going. I think it would have been a lot harder if I was doing it alone.

  • adam

    tara – I totally want a 6/8 pack! … I just don’t want to workout 8 hours a day for it… the problem is I have chosen a profession where I’ll be sitting in a chair for most of the time.

    bree – re: heart condition–is this what doctoral programs do to people? Yikes… Nice work with the running now! It’s good to know that it pays off. I’ve been to the gym twice now since I started last week and feel like a train hit me. I’m sure it will get better though.

  • G

    “What inspires you to exercise, to live in healthy ways?”

    a picture of 40 yr old woman’s six pack. seriously!

    (btw… not to turn feminist on you… but couldn’t you have gotten a pic of armstrong nearly nekked as well? to be fair? I bet he has nice abs too. 🙂

  • adam

    haha G, in this case I actually thought the opposite, i.e. her picture is not sexual, but rather shows off her hard work. If anything, it’s some reverse sexism. Plus, I’m feminist. Or maybe I’m just talking in circles.

    If that doesn’t work for you, here you go… 🙂

  • Cathleen

    I’m going to completely sidestep your question and talk about Dara. She was my Spanish III partner in High school our junior year. She was (and I assume still is) a wonderful person; funny, smart, kind….just really genuine.
    I had the good fortune of attending High School with many future Olympians. Mission Viejo (Orange County, CA)was quite the training place for swimmers and divers. It was fun to be so close to the action for the ’84 Los Angeles Olympics.
    Dara went onto finish her senior year elsewhere after the Olympics. I have followed her career over the years and have always been impressed. She carries herself well and deserves respect not only for her hard work (and awesome physique), but for being a genuinely nice person.

  • adam

    Thanks Cathleen, what a great personal insight! Apparently one can be ripped and not insane (hanndallfam #6). 🙂

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