We Were Made to Move: Let’s Get Walking!

Drs. Davidicus Wong, Karime Mitha and Shelley Ross

Drs. Davidicus Wong, Karime Mitha and Shelley Ross

To some, the idea of exercise brings to mind four-letter words, like pain and work. But physical activity is not just for athletes and kids. It is essential to all of us. Healthy physical activity is one of the four foundations of self-care (a healthy lifestyle). The others are a healthy diet (what you put into your body), healthy relationships (how you relate) and emotional health (how you feel). The most important predictor (what you have control over) of your future health are the habits you practice today. We were made to move. When we don’t our health suffers. When we do, we thrive. The human body evolved to survive in times when food was scarce and life more physically demanding. Our genes are more suited to the prehistoric world. That’s why we crave fatty, high calorie foods and why we accumulate body fat if we don’t keep moving. If physical activity is a part of your everyday life then your life every day will be better. Daily physical activity can boost your mood and reduce anxiety. It can help you maintain a healthy weight, muscle strength and tone, coordination and comfort in your own body. We need a certain level of fitness in order to do the essential activities of daily living, including dressing, bathing, meal preparation, housework and getting out of the house to do the things we want and need to do. Fortunately, we have bodies and brains that are highly adaptable. With regular practice, physical activity becomes easier: we grow in strength, skill, speed and grace. We can acquire healthy new habits. Though technology intends to improve the quality of our lives, it often degrades the quality of our health. Most of us would be much healthier if we walked or cycled instead or riding and driving. For many young people, thumbs get more exercise than legs. Even the couch potatoes of the sixties got more physical activity than couch potatoes today. We now use remotes to avoid the few extra steps to change the channel. If you’ve become less active because of the demands of everyday life or if you’ve just fallen into some bad habits, it’s not too late to change. Being more active can benefit you at any time in your life. It can make the difference between just getting by and feeling great. I invite you to take the first steps on the path of better health. May 9th to 15th is the Doctors of B.C.’s Walk With Your Doc week, and doctors throughout the province will be promoting physical activity in a variety of community events. On Saturday, May 9th, we’ll kick off the week with a free and fun 2 km walk at Kitsilano Beach Park in Vancouver at 9:30 am. As the event’s emcee, I’ll be there with many of my colleagues along with our patients. Even if your doctor isn’t there, you’re welcome to attend. All members of the public are invited, but come early to get your free pedometer. For more information about this event, check online at www.doctorsofbc.ca/walk-with-your-doc. To celebrate the World Health Organization’s Move for Health Day on Sunday, May 10th (Mothers’ Day), the City of Burnaby has organized a large number of free events including pole walking, canoe lessons, boot camp,. For more information check the City’s website at burnaby.ca. Dr. Davidicus Wong is a family physician. His Healthwise column appears regularly in community newspapers. For practical tips for healthier living, see the Burnaby Division of Family Practice’s website at divisionsbc.ca/burnaby.

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About Davidicus Wong

I am a family physician. I write a weekly newspaper column, Healthwise for the Vancouver Courier, Burnaby Now, Royal City Record and Richmond News.
This entry was posted in Burnaby Division of Family Practice, Empowering Healthcare, Exercise, Healthy Living and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to We Were Made to Move: Let’s Get Walking!

  1. sHar says:

    Looking forward to your talk on high blood pressure on Jan 29
    You seem to walk the walk not only talk the talk.
    tHanks. wIsh I could be your patient because you have a more rounded view on medicine than
    Many other Doctors

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