Getting in Shape with Bender Ball

Archive for March 2010

Most experts believe that 20-30 minutes each day is the minimum amount of exercise a person should get. But if that is too hard to arrange, or too much for your current activity level, it is better to start with less and try to work up to a longer routine. You can even split your workouts. Bender Ball is great for this, since you only need 5-10 minutes a day of crunchless abs with the Bender Ball to get great results. The rest of your routine can be done with walking, swimming, etc.

It is certainly better to exercise every day, if possible. If not, try to at least exercise most days of the week, perhaps every other day, with a day of rest in between.

One amazing thing about exercise is that once you start, get into it and see the great results, it is very hard to stop. And finding ways to make it easier and more fun also helps a lot. That’s why I love the combination of my Bender Ball and my iPod, the two of them make my exercise routine really enjoyable.

Let’s talk a bit about why we exercise. Of course we do it to look great and feel good, but what is really going on in our bodies that make having a regular work-out routine so important? One answer is that we do it for our heart. It is important to keep our hearts strong, and since the heart is a muscle, giving it regular exercise can make a big difference to its health. Here’s a brief rundown on what the essential concerns are related to your exercise routine:

1. Exercise usually refers to rhythmic activities that get your heart beating a bit faster. Those activities can include walking, running, biking, and swimming. The goal should be to get your heart rate into your “target heart rate zone.” Pick an activity that you enjoy so that you will be more inclined to continue with it.

2. Exercise should be conducted at a moderate intensity, meaning that you should reach about 60% to 70% of your maximum heart rate. This can be translated into what is called “Perceived Exertion Scale, where level 1 is sitting in front of the TV munching down some chips, and level 9 is “I am most likely going to die,” and level 10 is “I am dead.” Moderate intensity, as we mentioned above is about level 4 to 6, where level 4 is “sweating a bit, but feel good and can talk without effort.” Level 5 is “Just beyond comfortable, sweating a bit more and can still talk.” And level 6 is “Still able to talk, but a bit breathless.” Sneaking in a few higher intensity bursts for short amounts of time are good. The best kind of workout incorporates a mixture of intensities. This keeps things more interesting and is a great way to exercise.

Do you know the expression “March comes in like a lion but goes out like a lamb?” I know this sounds crazy, but because of this March is one of my favorite months. It usually starts out cold, rainy, and sometimes even snowy. But during the weeks of March you see the leaves returning to the trees, the grass pushing its way up through the cold, hard soil, and spring flowers beginning to bloom. Some of my favorite flowers are tulips and daffodils, which are only seen for a very short while at the beginning of spring.

Spring is also when I first began to exercise with my Bender Ball. That year winter was very stormy and cold. There were a few days when there was no school for the kids and we couldn’t get to work, either. I was already a little bit overweight, and not feeling so great about myself. I found I was eating more than I should have been that winter, and by the time March arrived I discovered that I had gained almost 10 pounds in just a few months. I was really upset. But just at the moment when I decided I needed to do something, one of my neighbors told me he was going to start a new routine using a great new device which would make exercise easy and fun- yes that was the Bender Ball. He showed it to me and let me try it out, and I was really impressed. Then he showed me his garden, which was already showing the spring flowers that I love so much.

I remember thinking, “My neighbor planted these tulips a long time ago so he could enjoy their beauty now. I need to start getting back into shape so that sometime in the future I will feel good about myself again.” The hope I felt at that moment, when I discovered Bender Ball, will always be associated for me with springtime, tulips and the great month of March.