Papercut and colored pencil art by Sheryl Aronson X 5

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Walk in the Sun

Yesterday was a gift for those of us in Northeast Ohio.  We had sunshine, and near 60 degrees F.  We have actually had several such days this year, an unusual number for winter in this part of the world.  I took a 40 minute walk outside, and came home with a smile on my face, and energy to spare.  What a great combination- walking and sunshine.  Our bodies need both.  
Sunshine promotes the production of vitamin D, which is sometimes referred to as a hormone, because of all the positive influences it has in our bodies.  Besides that, people tend to smile more on sunny days, and I sure noticed yesterday that people were friendlier and more social wherever I went.   I love the feel of the sun on my skin on days like this.  (Not so much in the middle of summer.) 
There have been hordes of research lately on how good walking is for the body.  It gives your heart, lungs, muscles, bones and most other parts of you a workout, and helps to improve your ability to function. It also feels good to move and to stretch.  Recent research has shown that exercise is good for people with Fibromyalgia.  It may hurt to move initially, but over time, exercise decreases pain and increases energy.  The key is to start near but not at your limit of what you can do comfortably, and to increase very slowly, perhaps adding on a little bit more each week of whatever you do to exercise.
I have become more active over the past year, doing water walking, Pilates, and on nice days, walking or hiking outside.  I have more energy than I have had in years, and fatigue hits me less often.  My pain has improved some, but not as noticeably.  I seem to get grumpy less often, too.
Sunshine and a walk is a combination I highly recommend.  Don't overdo either one, though.  There is such a thing as too much of a good thing.

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