The best physical exercise program

Exercise. Some people describe it as Vitamin X just to show how vital physical exercise is to our physical health. Vitamins are vital amines, which are essential organic compounds required as a vital nutrient in tiny amounts by an organism. While exercise cannot be classified as a vital amine as the real vitamins, it is a vital component that our physical, mental and spiritual nature requires in order to be healthy and active.

Nowadays with the media touting the importance of physical activity,  you can find people jogging, walking, cycling, swimming or participating in a gymnastic exercise program, etc…. that they believe will keep them fit.

But one may wonder, “what is the best productive exercise that is suitable for everyone”?

Here is what  a 19th century health educator and religious writer has to say about the best exercise program.

Walking, in all cases where it is possible, is the best exercise, because in walking, all the muscles are brought into action. Many who depend upon the movement-cure could, by exercise, accomplish more for themselves than the movements can do for them. There is no exercise that can take the place of walking. Want of exercise causes the bowels to become enfeebled and shrunken. Exercise will strengthen these organs that have become enfeebled for want of use. The circulation of the blood is greatly improved by the act of walking. The active use of the limbs will be of the greatest advantage to invalids.”  {HR, July 1, 1872 par. 14}

There is no exercise that can take the place of walking. By it the circulation of the blood is greatly improved. . . . Walking, in all cases where it is possible, is the best remedy for diseased bodies, because in this exercise all of the organs of the body are brought into use.– T., V. III, p. 78.  {HL 129.5}

When the weather will permit, all who can possibly do so ought to walk in the open air every day, summer and winter. . . . A walk, even in winter, would be more beneficial to the health than all the medicine the doctors may prescribe. For those who can walk, walking is preferable to riding. The muscles and veins are enabled better to perform their work. There will be increased vitality, which is so necessary to health. The lungs will have needful action; for it is impossible to go out in the bracing air of a winter’s morning without inflating the lungs.– T., V. II, p. 529.  {HL 130.1}

There is no exercise that will prove as beneficial to every part of the body as walking. Active walking in the open air will do more for women, to preserve them in health if they are well, than any other means. Walking is also one of the most efficient remedies for the recovery of health of the invalid. The hands and arms are exercised as well as the limbs.– H. R.  {HL 130.2}

Exercise will aid the work of digestion. To walk out after a meal, hold the head erect, put back the shoulders, and exercise moderately, will be a great benefit. The mind will be diverted from self to the beauties of nature. The less the attention is called to the stomach after a meal, the better.– T., V. II, p. 530.  {HL 130.3}

Morning exercise, in walking in the free, invigorating air of heaven, or cultivating flowers, small fruits, and vegetables, is necessary to a healthful circulation of the blood. It is the surest safeguard against colds, coughs, congestions of the brain and lungs, inflammation of the liver, the kidneys, and the lungs, and a hundred other diseases.– H. R.  {HL 130.4}

Here is another interesting article that she wrote comparing gymnastic exercises with the exercises of that of a farmer.

Those who combine useful labor with study have no need of gymnastic exercises. And work performed in the open air is tenfold more beneficial to health than in-door labor. Both the mechanic and the farmer have physical exercise, yet the farmer is the healthier of the two. Nothing short of nature’s invigorating air and sunshine will fully meet the demands of the system. The tiller of the soil finds in his labor all the movements that were ever practiced in the gymnasium. His movement-room is the open fields. The canopy of heaven is its roof, the solid earth its floor. Here he plows and hoes, sows and reaps. Watch him, as in “haying time” he mows and rakes, pitches and tumbles, lifts and loads, throws off, treads down, and stows away. These various movements call into action the bones, joints, muscles, sinews, and nerves of the body. His vigorous exercise causes full, deep, strong inspirations and exhalations, which expand the lungs and purify the blood, sending the warm current of life bounding through arteries and veins. A farmer who is temperate in all his habits, usually enjoys health. His work is pleasant to him. He has a good appetite. He sleeps well, and may be happy.

Contrast the condition of the active farmer with that of the student who neglects physical exercise. He sits in a close room, bending over his desk or table, his chest contracted, his lungs crowded. He cannot take full, deep inspirations. His brain is tasked to the utmost, while his body is as inactive as though he had no particular use for it. His blood moves sluggishly through the system. His feet are cold, his head hot. How can such a person have health?

Let the student take regular exercise that will cause him to breathe deep and full, taking into his lungs the pure invigorating air of heaven, and he will be a new being. It is not hard study that is destroying the health of students, so much as it is their disregard of nature’s laws.” {Fundamentals of Christian Education 74.}

So roll up your sleeves and start working out in the best productive exercise program, gardening!

Or you could start walking your way back to health or to keep your health!

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