Exercise … It’s Bad for Us!

The Secret Waterfall!

Over breakfast the other day, there was something on the news that didn’t fully register at the time. They said fat people who spent less time sitting lost more weight. And they keep it off better too. Duh, I guess, eh!

Anyway, they said if you spend 3 fewer hours sitting every day, it works wonders. You didn’t have to do gymnastics, nor run triathlons. Just get off your ass an extra 3 hours a day. While it didn’t capture my attention at the time, it jumped back into my thoughts as I was trying to figure out how to modify one of those rolling hospital tables. You know the type they roll over the bed. I was redesigning it so that I could more comfortably do my day job from … wait for it … an armchair & ottoman combo! ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜‚

You want one now too, don’t you! ๐Ÿ˜

Since I was already overdoing the sitting “activity”, this was just silly. I decided to get more active instead.

Walking around a suburban neighbourhood isn’t much fun. The view of my back yard is good enough, especially if I’m lying on my lounger! I needed something more exciting to motivate me to move. I like to visit new places. Places with a little variety & adventure. But we’re on lockdown, stuck in our own communities. Were there any hidden spots, locally, that I hadn’t seen before? Is there an app that can help with that?

There is!

I download this trails app &, to my total disbelief, I discovered a waterall very close by. It’s on a little river that flows into a lake that I’d also never heard of. Wow, who knew? The app said the walking trail was a short, flat, easy loop. How perfect.

That bloody app was lyin’ to me! ๐Ÿคช๐Ÿ˜

The trail head was down a gravelled dirt road. Lucky I brought the truck, I might have lost the car in the potholes. Finally came upon another parked truck & figured this must be the spot. The trail was wild & wooded, barely marked with paint spots & faded orange ribbons. The app’s navigation map helped, especially when the trail markings disappeared. I’m not sure why the description said it was flat but, far too late, I realised I had gone a long way downhill to get to the falls. I could only hope that the return half of the loop magically kept on going downhill. After catching my breath & capturing a few pics of the falls, I was ready for the rest of the loop back. Actually, I wasn’t. By then, I really just wanted to be airlifted out. I was tired, thirsty, & I wanted to be home again already. Sitting! To top it off, this was the warmest day of the year so far. The bloody mosquitoes thought I was their first summer barbeque. Little bleepers!

I followed the map & the markings. I crossed the little river, twice, & got a little wet. Then I ran out of trail. The map said I was on the trail, but there was no trail that I could see. And I didn’t have a machete to hack my way through the overgrown “path” the app now wanted me to follow. Hauling my corpulence through the woods already had my heart rate on the top shelf. Not having a shortcut back to the truck only made it worse. I sat down on a rock. OMG, I just realised something & jumped back up! Are there swarms of disease-laden ticks in this God-forsaken place? No way is this hiking stuff healthy. I really just wanted to pin-drop someone to come get me now.

But, instead, I had to turn around & go back the way I came. I crossed the little river again. Twice. I got a little wet again. I easily lost 2lbs to sweat. Maybe another pound of blood was donated to the mozzies. Going back uphill, I had to sit & recover. More than once. Okay, more than twice but, at last, I could see the glint of sun off the back of my truck. I made it.

Later that evening, I was watching the local news. They showed Momma bears popping up all over the city with their cubs. Bloody bears too? I didn’t even know that I should have been worried about bears in the woods, for cryin’ out loud. That’s it, I’m done with all this woods & nature crap. Anyone got any other ideas (safe ones only!) that I can use to get off my posterior periodically?

THE Best Exercise for Fat Burning

My favorite part of gardening?
Watching plants grow!

Just what you need, exercise advice from a fat guy, eh! But hang with me for a minute.

If you subscribe to the notion that you can burn off the fat with exercise, good luck with that. Trust me. Or even if you don’t, it doesn’t matter, you likely still can’t. But … and this is big … there are so many more reasons to do exercise that we can’t afford not do it. No matter how poorly the scale tells me I’m doing, I try to do something physical every now & again. Ideally, we probably all need to move about an hour or so a day. For a fit person, that may be pounding a bicycle up a mountainside. For someone like me, who previously considered thumbing the remote control exercise, it may be a leisurely walk around the mall. Though I will skip past the donut counter, of course!

I like to find a nice natural place, with trees & water. I called it water therapy ’til I heard about Shinrin-yoku. That sounded so cool, I started calling my walks by that name! From Japanese, it means forest bathing. Doesn’t that sound so anciently mystical? It’s not, it was “developed” in the 80s. But it’s something we all know instinctively. We are meant to be one with nature. Every now & again, I need to walk, ramble, amble, shamble my way through a forest path. Or by a lake. Better yet, a little saunter along an ocean beach. Even a park, or my back yard, will do in a pinch. No need to think of burning calories. No headphones glued to my ears. I don’t worry about what my heart rate is. No thoughts of how many steps I’m taking. I just like to take in a little of nature’s music every now & again.

So how does that help with weight loss?

For starters, I simply feel better. Feeling well is a positive contagion that helps me make better choices throughout the day. Maybe even through tomorrow. It’s easier to make better food choices when I feel well. I’m a little nicer to people after a walk. I’m even a little nicer to myself! I find myself going to bed happier. And sleeping better. I don’t even mind a little muscle ache every now & again. That just proves that I did something good. All of those effects can reset our stress hormones too.

If you can already ride your bicycle for miles, lift a 50 pound sacks of spuds over your head with one hand, & do 100 one-arm push-ups, just keep on doing all that. If, on the other hand, the remote control & the couch is your gym, make just a little change. Get up, slowly, & sneak outside. Amble, shamble & ramble awhile. Take an umbrella & enjoy the rain. Leave the electronics behind. Try a little Shinrin-yoku every day & let me know what happens. It can works wonders … for mind, body & soul.

Now if only I could follow my own advice more often! ๐Ÿ™‚