Exercise – The Blessings of Weights and Balances
February 24th, 2012 by admin
When I shattered my wrist several months ago, the experience left me with a titanium plate and nine pins in my wrist. Worse yet, the pain associated with the injury and my extended healing period contributed to my letting my exercise program lapse. This was extremely unfortunate because not only did I lose weight that I didn’t need to lose, but I also lost muscle. Just as grievous — perhaps more so, I had begun to lose bone density too, which as most of you know, is the beginning of osteoporosis — not a welcome sign for someone like me, who is athletic and loves to ski.
Staying healthy and full of vitality throughout our lifetimes is a realistic, achievable goal. However, such a goal takes effort. My physical therapist suggested that I work with a personal trainer to jump-start my healing, and frankly, to motivate me to do the hard work necessary to recover full functionality in my injured wrist and weak muscles. He also created an overall exercise program that included a lot of weights to build up my bone mass, and to stop osteoporosis. We focused on rebuilding and strengthening my core strength and my balance as well.
The lessons I learned from my wrist injury continue to impact me. However, one lesson stands out above the rest that’s been really life-altering:
We must keep moving, no matter what.
Regardless of the fact that one part of us may be injured or otherwise out of commission, our health and well-being is enhanced when we embrace an exercise program that suits our particular needs. I can see a difference in the way my body feels, and how I feel emotionally as well. Weight-bearing exercises are rebuilding my core strength, and my bone density is nearly back to normal — skier ready. Exercise keeps my heart pumping happily, keeps my blood pressure down, makes my legs strong, and gives me pleasure. Not only can I now balance on one leg for more than a minute, but my inner balance is coming back too.
I could say that the older we get, the more important it is to maintain a vigorous work-out program and sustain optimum health benefits. But most of us have already heard this advice, rehashed in one form or another. So I’ll repeat another phrase — one that we often attribute to another action entirely; “If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.” This statement can be applied to our bodies on multiple levels. So, “just do it,” as the famous Nike ads suggest. Go for it. Choose health, and laughter, and vitality. Choose bone mass, muscle, and injury recovery. Keep moving. Choose quality of life, and do this at every age. Don’t wait. Start young, and make it a healthy habit.
You may discover that weights and balances can be a blessing in your life too.