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Interesting article on muscles and exercise

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Our muscles are an amazing part of our anatomy. Without them, we would all be mushy, spongy Doe Boys unable to walk or move. All 640 of the named muscles in our bodies are responsible for movement in one form or another. Without movement, our muscles go soft and atrophy.

The Baby Boomers are in their sixties now. This makes the largest segment of our population senior citizens. What are we seeing out there in our restaurants, bookstores, supermarkets and other public places? We're seeing more and more walkers and canes. Is this the inevitable result of aging? Absolutely not. But it is the inevitable result of muscles gone soft because of lack of movement.

And that's what happens to many of us as we age. We stop moving and our muscles turn into marshmallows. Not only that, our brains suffer too. A study from the University of North Carolina showed that the blood vessels in the aging brain twist and narrow with age. The seniors who exercise regularly actually have brains that look more like the brains of younger people.

Young brains benefit from exercise too. Dr. John J. Ratey, clinical associate professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, stated that research has shown exercise benefits the child's brain by "improving blood flow and spurring cell growth". The young people who exercise do better in school, have better moods and are more open to learning. The brain is not a muscle; but it operates under the same "use it or lose it" truism as our muscles. And, as the commander-in-chief of our body, it tells our muscles what to do.

An article about muscles going soft wouldn't be complete without addressing the most important muscle in our bodies--our heart muscle. The heart muscle is known as the cardiac muscle. Cardiac muscle is one of the three types of muscles. The other two types are skeletal and smooth muscle. The appearance of cardiac muscles are similar to the appearance of skeletal muscles as they both have a striated structure meaning they are marked by transverse dark and light bands and made up of elongated fibers. The cardiac muscle is built to pump; and pump it does--continuously. We all know we need to exercise to strengthen our hearts, and we need to do it aerobically; but many aren't really clear about what aerobic exercise is.

Aerobic exercise is any activity that causes our muscles to use oxygen. This means the heart has to work harder to get more oxygen to those muscles. And that's what makes it stronger. Aerobic activity has to last longer than 3 minutes to be of any benefit, and a minimum of 20 minutes is often recommended for best results. Thousands of people suffer from heart disease due to lack of exercise. It's one of our three top killers.

Another reason muscles go soft is that in our modern world, we are increasingly involved with sit-down technology. Look at what you're doing right now. You're reading this article from your computer. The computer age is causing many people to be sedentary rather than active, and that includes thousands of our children. The computer coupled with that other piece of technology responsible for creating couch potatoes, the TV, makes living indoors in a sitting or lying down position the dominant way we spend our time.

I realize many of us make our living sitting in front of computers, so there's eight hours of necessary sitting for five days a week right there without counting the hours of TV and home computing. No wonder, as a society, we're gaining weight and joining the obesity rolls in ever greater numbers.

What's the solution? MOVEMENT--regular, consistent, habitual movement. We've got to get into motion again. Not for a day, a week, a month but for the rest of our lives. How do we do that? Let me count the ways. There are millions of lose weight/ firm muscle how 2's, DVD's, books, gadgets, TV and gym programs. What's important is that you choose one and get started. If that one isn't enjoyable or effective, find another one. It's your health, your longevity, your clarity of mind that's at stake here. I'm about to test drive a program for myself. You can follow along on my Blog where I'm going to share a day-by-day account of this fat burning/muscle hardening program. But please don't let my adventure into movement make you even more sedentary. Instead, come join me and dive into your own body/life transformation.

I'm on a mission to help as many people as I can get fit for 2010, including myself. I've been studying and engaging in one form of fitness or another for over 20 years. I've gleaned a lot of knowledge; and it's time to put it into action and share it. Recently, I discovered the "Fat Burning Furnace", a complete program for turning fat into muscle; and I'm about to turn on that furnace in myself.

To me fitness encompasses several important areas including: physical, nutritional and spiritual fitness. It's all about balancing these seemingly different aspects of ones life into an integrated, holistic life-style.

Please join me at my Blog space as I embark on a Personal Fitness Challenge including exercise, nutrition, and daily supplements. My plan is to share it all as I experience it and, hopefully, motivate you to do the same.

Just go to: http://activelyspeaking.wordpress.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Grace_Sylke

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/2936231



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