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Getting Fit: Natural Solutions to Ease the Ouch!
by Alan Joel

Between New Year's Resolutions and spring weather, a lot of people spend the first part of any new year thinking about getting fit. Sadly, statistics show that by February 1st of any given year 92% of people are no longer engaged in their New Year's Resolutions! And weight loss--thus, getting fit--tops the list of resolutions.

Luckily, spring weather usually offers people a second opportunity to think about getting fit. The thought of how one will look in summer clothes (think bikini and swimming trunks) gets people motivated all over again.

I know this happened with me! The spring weather had me out mowing the lawn, weeding, moving hoses... and panting like the last horse in the race! So, having been in the Marines in my youth, I decided to set myself up for a self-created Boot Camp!

Boot Camp: Can You Say Ouch?

What does boot camp look like for a 76-year old man? It may not look like the Marine Boot Camp I did in my youth, but nevertheless it is rigorous. In addition to the yard work inspired by spring, my Boot Camp involves:
  • daily workouts on my Total Gym
  • weight lifting with free weights every other day
  • full yoga program on days with no weight-lifting
  • light yoga daily
I had my wife measure my body before I began. I then set out to follow my program intensely and fully for two weeks. I decided two weeks was the optimum time to see whether the Boot Camp was the correct level of intensity.

The first three days, my mind was filled with this question: What was I thinking?

Yeah, can you say ouch? I expected there to be plenty of muscular soreness, but thought that I could alleviate that with the yoga. Unfortunately, I forgot that when you have not done a full yoga program for a while, that even the resting poses (such as down dog) don't feel restful at all!

Natural Solutions That Help

Luckily, being a Doctor of Chinese Medicine and a life-long student of health and nutrition, I was able to dig through my cabinet of natural solutions and come up with some supplements that would support my body as I went through my self-created Boot Camp.

Liver Support: Since the liver governs tendons, ligaments, and muscles, I added a gentle liver support supplement to my daily regimen.

More Stretching: I realized that my full yoga program was a bit much to do every other day, as some of the poses (such as the full regimen of Sun Salutations) were straining certain muscles and tendons/ligaments that were already tired. I replaced one of the days of full yoga with a gentler stretching program.

More Sleep: Never one to sleep a great deal, I have discovered that sleep is a wonderful natural solution for helping the body recover and recoup energies expended through extensive exercise.

Cellular Support: Since my Boot Camp was asking my body to build a bunch of "new" muscles and enhance my current body structure, I also decided to add a natural supplement to boost stem cell production.

The results? At the end of two weeks, with the addition of the above-mentioned natural solutions, I am ready to expand my Boot Camp regimen. I am excited that at age 76 I am able to do these physical exercises. No, I can't do pushups Marine-style anymore... but hey, at least I CAN do pushups. I am thrilled!

How about you? How are you going to renew, refresh, and rejuvenate your body this year for health and happiness?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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