Exercise and wellbeing

As I was out for my walk this morning, I realised a couple of things.

The first realisation was that I’ve done this walk before, many months ago, when I was lighter in weight, and more fit than I am now, however, I could never make it back up the 20% gradient without stopping for a breather in the past.

This morning, as I was approaching the top of the gradient, doesn’t look that steep in the picture, but believe me it turns me into a puffing billy!

The end point of the climb back home

The end point of the climb back home

Anyway, as I was approaching this tree, I realised that yesterday (and now also today), I climbed back up to this tree without pausing for a breather – how incredible! I can only put it down to the better nutrition I’ve been undertaking lately – boy, is it impressive

Well, this morning I thought I’d also let you know about the wonderfully easy strengthening exercises I’ve been doing post walk. Yes, this morning my arms and legs were a little tight after beginning to do them again yesterday, but I’m sure that will pass in the next day or so.

The first one I do is a raised push-up. This targets the chest, arms and core of the torso – and it can be done anywhere! I do it leaning against the railing on the backdeck – that allows me to spot any birds flying around at the same time!!

You can do it on anything though, a back of the chair (though make sure it’s a heavy stable one), a park bench or even a fence. Essentially you stand on the balls of your feet, hands wider than your shoulders, then place your hands on the chosen object and lower your chest to the object, lightly touch it with your chest, then push yourself back up.  I have been doing this 15 times before resting and then repeating it once more.

The next one I do is squats. This targets the lower body, I feel it in the thighs. Essentially, whenever there is a chair around, and I do mine with an outdoors chair on the back deck, perform a squat onto the chair, but don’t touch the chair! Stand facing away from the chair, with the back of your legs about 20cm away from the seat, and your arms held up straight out in front of you, then squat down until your bum just grazes the seat, then stand back up straight again. Again, I’ve been doing this 15 times, before resting and then repeating it once more.

The last one I do is Core. This targets the core muscles. I sit on the front of the chair (not lounging back!!), straight back, arms raised straight out in front of me, sitting tall, lengthening the gap between the belly button and the bottom of your chest. Hold your head up, as if you’re holding an apple between your chest and chin. I then lean back about 10 degrees, until I feel the tightness in my abdomen, it’s hard to hold this position, hold there for 3 breaths, then sit up. Another one that I repeat 15 times, before resting and repeating again.

What I love about these exercises is that you can easily do them throughout your day if you’re out and about, or even if you’re sitting in your office (I always ensure noone is looking, but I’m really lucky in that my office is my own!) – use your desk for the raised push-ups – so easy.

I’ve also found some other exercises that look interesting and I’m going to try them out over the next week too. They’re about improving flexibility.

Just to finish off, I wanted to share the beautiful pond at the botanic gardens where I’m walking to and from every day, it’s such a peaceful place

Pond at the botanical gardens

Pond at the botanical gardens

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