For the past couple of weeks I have been very blessed to be working at a physical therapy office as a physical therapy assistant.  I have learned a load working there and love every minute of it.  The people I work for are so nice and intelligent and the people I work with are so cheery and inspiring.  One thing that I have been thinking a lot about since I have been working there is, “How could we have prevented things from becoming this bad?”  Some of the situations I encounter from day to day could be prevented if people would just be more aware that the things we do in our everyday lives when we are younger affect how we are when we are older.  We need to think more in the long term when it comes to health and fitness.

This has inspired me to think of the things I could be doing now to make a better future and how I want to teach others to prevent the simple things from happening.  These things are simple, like being able to get up from a chair without using your hands or to be able to walk across the room without scuffing your feet so you can prevent yourself from falling and possibly breaking a bone.  Another thing to do is to try to balance on one leg to work on proprioception, this teaches your brain to talk to your muscles so you can react faster. The things we do every day, no matter how big or how small, do affect our futures in so many ways.  I have always heard that, but have never really physically seen it until I started my new job.

A mindset we have all gotten used to is just worrying and fixing things when they become broken.  When we are sick, we go to the doctor, we rarely think of going to the doctor to take preventative steps in order to protect ourselves from getting sick.  When things like this happen, we don’t really think that these things are caused by our own doing.  We most likely think that we got sick because there is the flu going around not because we haven’t been eating healthy and exercising lately.  Not to say that if you are eating healthy and exercising that you will never get sick, but it will cause you to get sick less often.

In the midst of all my rambling, the main point is: the little things we do now affect us in the future.  Exercising and eating healthy isn’t all about making ourselves look better but to help us live healthier lives.   Working on balance and strength now will help us be able to walk better, move better prevent a lot of things that could go wrong.  Also, this process is continuous.  Many times I see people come in and want to get better and do their exercises, then when they get better, they stop.  After a while, they tend to come back again because of the same problem or a different one.  Health is a lifestyle, it’s not like medicine and you only take it when you feel sick.  You should be taking care of yourself every day.  The reason I wanted to write this is because a lot of the things I see day to day are preventable and it only takes a few simple actions each day or each week to age gracefully.  The people I work with are adamant about working on balance and strengthening their bodies, but if they would have focused on it a little earlier in life, it wouldn’t be so hard now.  So, take a little time out of the day to strengthen your legs.  Practice getting up out of a chair without using your arms, balance on one leg for as long as you can, march around the house picking up your knees, and practice walking up  and down the stairs.  I know it seems small and simple, but it makes a world of difference.

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