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Play More, Suffer Less

By Nancy Hill

I don't even like the word "exercise" anymore. Like the word "diet", which really just means what you eat, the meaning of the word "exercise" has changed.

It once meant you were "physically moving your body for the sake of your health". That doesn't sound bad at all. Unfortunately, it has come to represent activities that are mostly boring, repetitive, and unappealing.

Movement is supposed to be fun. It should be good for the soul as well as for the body.

Our bodies are meant to be in motion. To be active, agile, busy, and full of life. We weren't meant to sit on the couch all day any more than we were meant to spend hours locked away in smelly gyms.

Time travel back to when you were a child. If you were like most children, you were on the move all the time. It was never called exercise. Who would have thought of such a thing?

It was called PLAYING! And it was fun. Children don't count calories. They don't force themselves to play for a certain amount of time. They move around because they love it and it feels good.

No pain, no gain - blechh. If lifting weights makes you happy, more power to you. But for most people that gym membership is just a waste of money and another source of guilt. Life is just too short to spend it being miserable.

The solution? Play more. Have more fun.

Keep it simple. Make it easy. Just get up and move your body around a little each day.

* Move in ways you LOVE.

* Move to feed your soul and to feel vibrantly healthy.

* Ratchet up the richness quotient in your life.

* Treat yourself to fun and playful ways to move about each day.

* Fire the drill sergeant in your head and do what feels good.

* Look for ways to move that make your heart soar with happiness.

Think back to childhood. What is an activity you loved doing then? Try that now just for fun. Some ideas"

* Toss a Frisbee around

* Learn karate again

* Take up roller skating or inline skating

* Dig out the old croquet set and play a few rounds

* Ride your bike around the neighborhood just for fun

* Splash around in a pool or lake

* Play some softball with friends

* Chase your dog around the yard

* Play miniature golf

* Jump around on a trampoline

* Make snow angels

* Play tag with the kids

* Jump rope

* Build a sandcastle at the beach

* Spin a hula hoop

* Put on some music and go wild dancing all through your house

* Go outside and dig around in the dirt

And some play ideas for adults"

* Hiking

* Swimming

* Running

* Belly dancing

* Skiing

* Tennis

* Yoga

* Gardening

* Golf

* Ice Skating

* Ballroom dancing

* Sailing

* Water Skiing

* Tai Chi

* Volleyball

* Basketball

* Soccer

* Yoga

* Stretching in any way that feels good to YOUR body

And don't forget the simplest choice of them all. The easiest and most natural thing we do is walk. It's what our bodies are built for. No special equipment needed other than a decent pair of shoes.

It only takes 30 minutes of activity a few times a week to make a dramatic improvement in your health. Check in with YOUR body. What kinds of movement does it want to do? Just ask it and see what response you get. Then do that thing and see how great you feel. Your body is wise. It knows exactly what it needs.

About The Author
©2006 Nancy Hill has helped thousands break free from the nightmare of dieting with her ebook, "Undieting - 11 Simple Steps to Reclaim Your Body and Your Life." Get your free Undieting Newsletter subscription at and discover how intuitive eating makes it easy to live at your ideal weight without ever dieting again.

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