Sitting and resting. Moving and circulating.
Which activity is best for a long life?
The body needs both; but, the latter (circulation) is life’s blood. If you live in a walking city, moving is a daily necessity. Suburban life involves a more sedentary existence. Everyday acts of living must provide the body with locomotion.
Sitting at a computer/desk is ruining wellness and posture. It creates strain on the neck, back, hips, knees, and feet. Using a stability ball as a chair allows the body to stack itself correctly (ears over shoulders, shoulders over hips, and knees over feet) by engaging the lower stomach muscle (transversus abdominis); thus, you create a strong core - not six pack abdominals (rectus abdominis) - with true strength for living an active life. A movement based routine improves chronic illnesses, prevents injury, and strengthens the immune system.
Grocery shopping is an ideal venue for practicing balance, posture and locomotion. The cart acts as a stability bar for the following exercises:
-Both hands on the cart. Imagine a two-way zipper on the front of the body, pelvis to sternum. Zip the zipper up. This action will engage the body’s core muscles (tranversus abdominis/lower abdominals). This motion will drop the tail bone down to the floor and release the shoulders away from the ears. Therefore, decreasing shoulder tension.
- Heel and toe lifts for articulating the three points of the foot (heel, ball, toe) alternating right and left then both feet together.
- Leg lifts to the side. With right hand on the cart lift your left leg in parallel to the side engaging the inner and outer thigh muscles (adductor and abductor). Repeat on the left.
-Bend and straighten the knees with legs parallel keeping the heels on the floor. Repeat in slight rotation (heels together, toes apart). This exercise is great for the front of the thigh (quadriceps femoris) and butt (gluteus maximus).
-Grab the grocery cart handle with both hands. Do a little jog down an empty aisle.
Now, the mundane has become an extra opportunity to get the blood circulating. Grocery shopping is the new Crossfit.