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Volume 2, Issue 7, July 2009


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Inch By Inch

Ken Nix

Wednesday, 7/29/2009

Carol Warner

Mile by mile, life is a trial. Inch by inch life is a cinch. Did you ever feel overwhelmed by all the stuff in life? I think we all have felt this multiple times in our lives. This article is about that much disliked aspect of life called EXERCISE, which many treat as a mile by mile but can actually be tackled as an inch by inch. Most of my adult life, I have had a great aversion to exercise. How often I have started various programs, routines, etc, which lasted multiple lengths of time, only to be lost in the life of too many irons in the fire which were all getting too hot at the same time. After the message on health that our loving Father gave us, I knew I needed to obey them in this area of my life. I won’t even list all the reasons, excuses, etc. I came up with and the half hearted, or no hearted attempts I made. It was an area of not surrendering, so instead of trying to come up with times, or routines for exercise, I started asking first for a change of attitude and then simple ways throughout the day that I could accomplish this. I want to share some ideas with you. We all seem to spend much more time in our cars hurrying to various places. So here are some of the things I have found helpful.

AUTO EXERCISE:  Stuck in traffic? bend your head from side to side working and stretching the neck muscles (this helps with a stiff feeling neck) not too good for stubbornness though. Circle your shoulders forward and backward, alternate lifting your shoulders, right, left, right( no military cadence needed here though) this can be done with both at the same time also. Flex your leg muscles, several times. Take deep breaths, inhale slowly, hold for a few seconds then exhale slowly and push out more “stale” air. Repeat several times. Flex your feet up and down and to the sides.  Do ankle circles, these can be done in many other places, while eating for example. You may find by focusing on doing some exercise, you may be distracted from eating as much. Flex and stretch your hands, making fists and stretching your hands against the outside of the steering wheel, i.e. thumb and little finger then the thumb and ring finger. This will help to work the muscles in your forearm as well. Tighten and relax your stomach muscles. It is amazing how much tension we carry in our faces. Probably a reflection of what is going on inside of us.

Now, see if you can come up with some more great ways to exercise your muscles while in the car.

AROUND THE HOUSE: As you go up any steps, stop and do several toe raises, dropping your heels below the step line. Next time you drop something on the floor, do some deep knee bends either after you pick the object up or before you pick it up. Some days you may find you have more opportunities to do this than other days. When you look in the lower cupboards for something, just do it deep knee bend style and then just repeat the movement. As you are bringing in those bags of groceries, straighten your back, bend your elbows and lift those bags up higher, like lifting weights. Use canned goods of equal size in each hand and do a few reps before you put them in the cupboard or before you open them to use them. Try curls, over the head lift, straight out to the sides, forward and back.

After stumbling your way to the bathroom in the morning, as you take that first look at yourself in the mirror, lift your arms to the ceiling, while stretching take the time to praise to God and Jesus for giving you another day to seek to please him. The more I submit and let them lead, I find exercise much more enjoyable and exciting. So, let’s continue with some more tips.

Switch the position of how you hold the broom or vacuum while you clean. If your left hand is at the top switch it with the right hand. If you sweep to the left, switch to the right to sweep. Are you aware of which way you sweep? If you have ever injured your arm or hand you will know how many things require more attention to accomplish.

Before you get up from your prayer position, drop on to your hands and do some modified push ups, or arch and stretch your back (like a cat) and then flex your spine so your belly lowers as far as you can.


AT WORK IN THE OFFICE: Roller chairs, with the swivel sure rob us of a lot of individual movement. Try switching to a regular chair and discover the difference. The auto exercises can also be done throughout the day at the office.  The “chin grip” on the phone, can create all sorts of neck issues.  At the file cabinet, take a few seconds to do some toe raises or deep knee bends. Stretching throughout the day is helpful as well. Take the stairs, for in many cases it is faster than waiting for the elevator, or using the escalator. Speaking of stairs again, try walking up or down backwards, and notice how different muscles are used. As you are doing routine motion, try to think of ways you can create more movement for your body.

We are fearfully and wonderfully made. When we follow the laws our creator designed for us, we will experience the blessings.

There are difficult times ahead and we are being prepared, and we have been told to do the things to prepare our physical temples as well.

The sooner we start the better. The choice, of course, is up to each of us. Remember, the more we yield and surrender, the more they can lead and guide.

What joy we will know!



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