PTZ's 52 Weeks Functional Health and Fitness- 20/20 Vision for 2020 Results

Welcome to WEEK 1 of PTZ's 52 Weeks of  Functional Health and Fitness.  Each week we will focus on one or more of the following 5 Elements of Health and Fitness:

1).  3 Types of Exercise
2).  Breathing practices, Rest and Sleep
3).  Healthy Weight Loss and Weight Management
4).  Conscious Eating
5).  Habits, Behavioral Change, Time Management, Focus and Free Choice vs Dependent Decisions

Here's a brief overview of the 5 Elements:

1).  3 Types of Exercise:
      a).  Adaptive - Functional Strength Training
      b).  Stimulating - Cardiovascular Training
      c).  Restorative- Gentle exercise, stretching, therapeutic and corrective exercise
2).  Breathing practices, Rest and Sleep
      a).  Deep belly breathing practices for managing stress, increasing energy and improving your
            mind-body connection.
     b).  Rest- what is the amount of rest you need to balance your active level and amount of stress
           in your life.
    c).  Sleep- 7-9 hours of quality sleep each night is ideal for most people including a short nap each
          day for optimum recovery.
3).  Healthy Weight Loss and Weight Management
      -Looking beyond the scale to measure progress and results.
     -Focusing on healthy approaches to achieving the optimum weight for you.
4).  Conscious Eating- Awareness of how foods affect us 'both good and bad' to help you find the most
      balanced approach to eating for your unique physical, mental and emotional needs.
5).  Habits-  It takes at least 21 days to create a new habit.
      Behavioral Change - Readiness to change model- we go from Not thinking about change to
      Thinking about change to Preparing to change to Taking Action toward change to Maintaining
      the new behavior or habit.
      Time Management -
                                    -Focus time is the time spent directly on goals you want to achieve.
                                    -Flex time is the time spent running errands, paying bills, etc
                                    -Fun time is time spent doing activities you enjoy.
     Free Choice vs Dependent Decisions


3 Types of Exercise, Breathing during Exercise, Breathing for Relaxation and FREE Choices vs Dependent Decisions

     In this post, I'd like to expand on the descriptions of Exercise, Breathing and Choices vs Decisions.
The first type of exercise is called Adaptive which has to do with creating and maintaining adequate functional strength.  What is Functional Strength Training?  It is traditionally defined as the practice of motion against resistance, with the goal of improving the individuals capacity and ability to perform a specific athletic activity.  This definition has been expanded in the modern day to be defined as a range of full-body movements and activities that build strength, balance and coordination for overall fitness, and improve the participants ability to perform general, day-to-day tasks.  Examples include body weight exercises that connect and coordinate the upper and lower body.  This includes body weight only as well as strength exercises that add free weights, weighted balls, stability balls, balance discs, resistance bands, and cables.  Pilates, Power Yoga, Core Training, Martial Arts and Tai Chi practice with added weights and resistance bands are also examples of the Adaptive Type of exercise.

      There are many benefits of adding proper breathing to your exercise as well as your day to day life.  If we consider the 'Rule of 3', which states - humans can live approximately 3 minutes without breath, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food.  The breath becomes extremely important yet because it is automatic we do very little to maximize the effectiveness of your breath.  The breath is the key or bridge that connects our mind to our body.  Qigong and Tai Chi Masters say 'the breath is the handle'.  How could we possibly use a hammer or a door without a handle.  The same goes for our body.  When we focus and connect to our breath during exercise, our balance, coordination, overall performance and function improve greatly.  In general, the proper way to breath during functional strength training is to inhale when the weight is coming toward you and exhale when the weight is moving away.  Put another way, it most effective to exhale on the exertion.

     Breathing for Relaxation-  Try this exercise:
Take a deep belly breath inhaling through your nose (allowing the breath to fill your lower lungs first, your belly expands, then your chest expands at the end of the inhale).  Hold your breath for 3-4 seconds then exhale slowly through through your nose or mouth.  Repeat 5-10 breaths.  Notice how your feel.  Work up to repeating this practice 3 times per day especially when you feel stressed or anxious.