My home community has started a 12 Weeks to Wellness fitness challenge. A local radio station has partnered with the city to get folks moving. The goal is to have people sign up in teams and then have those teams post their activities and steps to an interactive website. Each team member has a target of at least 60,000 steps a week. There are prizes up for grabs, but the real prize will be improved levels of fitness for everyone involved.
I've entered a team. Myself and two other administrators have signed on to form Team Waddler. Our team emblem is a chubby penguin. Those who know me, know the significance of the penguin avatar, but it also has to do with nicknames acquired by administrators who have run with me over the years. We've taken on a wildlife motif. I am the Waddler. My team mates are the Puffin and the Bear. Together we are a thundering herd.
There are many benefits to being active. There's the obvious ones related to physical size and appearance. Exercise is a good way to control weight, build strength and feel better. There are also intellectual benefits. Commitment to a consistent fitness regime has been shown to lessen anxiety and lift depression. It can set a positive mood to each day, raise self esteem and improve one's chances of getting a restful sleep. Happier, healthier, smarter people through exercise! Who'd have thunk it!
There will always be lots of reasons to put off exercising. The world is a busy place, and face it, we all have things that need to be done each day and can lay claim to our time. But if exercise can make us all more fit, smarter an more pleasant to be around - it has to be worth the effort.
So take up the challenge! I guarantee time spent on fitness is never wasted. Even if you don't have a local fitness challenge to join, I encourage you to get out and get active. It might be hard work at first but if you stick to it, you WILL feel better for the effort. Who knows it might even make you smarter!