Are you a worrier? There are times that worrying can actually be helpful, when it moves you into action to solve a problem. But constant worry can send your anxiety levels through the roof, creating issues with daily functioning. Allowing yourself to get caught up in the “what ifs” and “I should haves” will take a toll on you emotionally and physically. First, determine if you are worried about something you have control over. If you do, move into action. If you don’t, try staying focused on the present moment. Pay attention to your body, your breath and your changing emotions. Keep a worry journal or schedule a worry period. Being mindful and staying in the moment won’t get rid of worrying completely but will help you focus on the here and now.
Source: Molly Ross, executive director,
Integris James L. Hall Jr. Center for Mind, Body and Spirit
Lunge ahead for fitness
Looking to amplify your workout on a walk or run? Look to the lunge. This do-anywhere exercise will firm up your glutes and strengthen your hamstrings, quads and calves. With tons of variations, your backside will never get bored! Here are five suggestions.
Alternating forward lunges: Take a large step forward and lower your body toward the floor. Both legs should be bent at a 90-degree angle at the bottom of the lunge. Use your glutes and hamstrings to rise back up to start and repeat on the other side.
Alternating reverse lunges: Same as the forward lunge only step backward instead.
Cross-behind lunges: Transfer your body weight onto your left leg and cross your right foot behind your left leg, keeping your hips facing forward as you bend both knees and lower yourself toward the floor (like a curtsy). Push back to start. Repeat on the other side.
Walking lunges: Walking lunges are the same as forward lunges except you alternate legs and you keep walking (moving) forward. Try doing walking lunges across the floor and back several times in a row. Add them as you go up a hill or up a flight of stairs to really kick in the glutes.
Split jump lunges: Start standing in a split stance with the right foot forward. Sink down into a lunge and jump straight up. While in the air, switch legs and land in a lunge with the left foot forward. Without resting, repeat the movement while alternating which leg is in front. This is a plyometric and will also shoot the heart rate up.
How to incorporate lunges into a walk or run
Every time you reach a stop sign on your walk or run, do 20 lunges of your choice.
Every time you approach a hill or set of stairs, lunge up it. If you don’t have any terrain on your route, then stop every 10 minutes and do a few walking lunges down the block.
Save the lunges for the end. When you’re done with your walk or run, don’t plop on the couch just yet. Do this mini-lunge workout to top off your cardio session:
10 alternating forward lunges, each leg.
10 alternating reverse lunges, each leg.
10 cross-behind lunges, each leg.
10 walking lunges, each leg.
30 seconds of split jump lunges.
Then repeat the mini-lunge workout one time.
Fit Tips are provided by Life Fitness, a leader in designing and manufacturing high-quality exercise equipment for fitness facilities and homes worldwide. For more information on Fit Tips and other fitness advice and expertise , go to www.lifefitness.com/blog.