From the Editor
The Woodstock Fruit Festival
in New York is now winding down, and Dr. Graham will head to his presentation at Raw Food Central
in Connecticut next. In this issue, Dr. Graham writes about vigorous activity and fitness from the festival,and we get another article in the 32 Elements of Health
series on … Vigorous Activity, of course! :)
Also included are a video of some fitness fun during Kevin’s work break, and some exercise ideas to get you started “playing your way toward health and fitness” through vigorous activity. Little bits of intense activity here and there can really liven up your day, your health, your fitness, and your life. This is my most common form of regular exercise.
Health and Fitness Week
is always a terrific place to get in a good dose of experiential learning that will help you integrate health and fitness activities into your life back home. It’s not too late to sign up and join us for this and other FoodnSport September Events
. I hope to see you there!
—Janie Gardener (JungleJanie)
From Dr. Graham
I'm just checking in this week while at the Woodstock Fruit Festival. I was asked to offer fitness classes while here. I have always enjoyed creating fitness classes on the spot, during the warm-up, based upon who shows up. The trick is to make the class safe yet challenging for everyone in attendance, regardless of their fitness level.
I enjoy demonstrating my creativity while designing efficient, effective, fun exercises for the class. Of special interest to me are the exercises and drills that require virtually no equipment at all, other than a floor. I find it quite engaging to develop the day's activities from the hip, with three goals in mind: covering a wide array of body parts; including all five facets of fitness (muscular strength, muscular endurance, cardio, flexibility, and neurological skills); and varying the factors of frequency, intensity, and duration.
Particularly challenging is not so much the creation of intense pursuits, but finding ways to encourage people to actually try them. Many people are somewhat intimidated by or reluctant to engage in intense exercise, even a little.
My method for assisting people to use intensity as one of the factors in their training is to convert our exercises into play sessions, games, contests, and personal challenges of various types. Invariably, people will play with more intensity than they will work. If you imagine people training in a gym setting, they are almost invariably methodical, whether on the treadmill-type machines, taking a class, or lifting weights. But when we watch children or adults playing an active game, the most notable features are the total commitment to the game, the intense bursts of activity, and the lack of patterned movement. Playing the game of tag requires you to be anything and everything in terms of movement, with the exception of being methodical.
The most reliable aspect of fitness training is that you develop exactly those qualities for which you train. So, if you wish to get better at strength exercises, you must perform exercises that demand strength. If you train with some short bursts of intensity, here and there, now and then, you will develop the ability to increase the intensity of those bursts. You will find that your mindset comes to accept them, appreciate them, and even very much enjoy them. Your body and physique will rise to the challenge, and will develop accordingly.
The benefits of applying intensity to all aspects of fitness training are strictly positive and rewarding, and well worth the effort.
... The raw diet is but one component of healthful living. Adequate rest and sleep, regular, vigorous physical activity, plenty of fresh air, sunlight, a positive outlook on life, and many other factors are also essential to creating good health.
Vigorous physical activity is a joyous celebration of movement. It can be a form of art, a means of release, a source of fun, or an inner exploration. To be active is a privilege, and it is high time that we experience regular activity in our lives. Children aren’t the only ones to thrive when they move about a lot; we do too. Without exercise, we grow tired and our attitude becomes stale. Moving is a source of pleasure, and the temporary “high” we obtain from it is a natural and constructive means of enhancing our mood.
The ancient Greeks built the first gymnasiums outdoors, in which the men trained daily, in the nude (gymnos
means “naked”; gymnazo
means “to train naked”). They prided themselves on their physical strength and stamina. All the while, Greece churned out more philosophers and scholars than any other culture in recorded history. The message to learn from them is: exercise benefits not only our physical and emotional well-being, but our ability to think clearly, too.
Read the whole article …
Strength. Flexibility. Breath.
Health and fitness are your birthrights. Both are free to possess; you just have to earn them. Achieving either is almost impossible with all the misinformation and expensive gimmicks in the field. Our premier event, Health and Fitness Week, is designed to liberate you from costly supplements, superfoods, and gym memberships, as well as bulky equipment and boring routines.
“Health is not something you contemplate; health is something that requires action, something that you move on.”
Get yourself a copy of the Perpetual Health Calendar for more daily lessons/quotes from Dr. Graham.
“It is a course in health that you take one day at a time.”
— Dr. Douglas Graham
Three Times Fast
By Janie Gardener
Creating a vigorous activity can be challenging and fun. Simply increasing the speed of an activity to as fast as you can go while still maintaining form and accuracy for a full minute does the trick. You can then repeat the activity or pick another one later on. Alternately, you can time yourself and see how long you can keep up your pace at full speed in good form.
The activity doesn’t need to be an official exercise. It can be something you make up for fun or something you are doing at the time. This becomes similar to saying a tongue twister three times fast, except with movement instead.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:
· Calisthenics: push-ups, pull-ups, squats, lunges, jumping jacks, burpees, etc.
· Sprint within your running or walking routine.
· Hop around the house while your computer starts up.
· Punch the air as fast as possible before you shower.
· Speed up the steps and movements of a dance as fast as possible for one minute.
· Speed up any repetitive task to as fast as safely possible for one minute.
· Create a multi-movement “body-twister” of sorts—anything that you find challenging to do three times fast, like a tongue twister.
Have fun with creative embellishments … and play yourself to health and fitness! Come and join us in the fun at Health and Fitness Week
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Newsletter credits: Janie Gardener (JungleJanie): editor-in-chief, graphics, and layout; DanDann: photography of Doug-ism head shot; Laurie Masters: editing; Grant Campbell: editing; Elan Sunstar: photography of children jumping and original of header image; Mark Rothstein: photography of people at Health and Fitness Week.