Guest Blogger: Adun Okupe (Fitness enthusiast)
Traditionally, there is something about Africans that always seemed to puzzle me. How we accepted that the older we got, the bigger we were allowed to become.
I never fully accepted it. Yet I can understand why. Whilst at school, exercise was easy as it was included in the routine. Yet, as we reach our mid-twenties, what with the pressures from work, social life and family, the one thing that we give up, the easiest thing to give up is our commitment to exercise.
We all know about the benefits of exercise for being fit, slimmer. Did you also know about the benefits of exercise for clearer skin, better hair, nails, and even long-term health? Could it be possible that 30 minutes of walking/running/jogging can yield all the above? YES! I tell you! Yes!
I was speaking to my neighbour recently. She saw me stretching after running, and she stopped to tell me that I should never give up exercise, as it helps reduce the arthritis, the internal organs. She went further to tell me about how she exercises 4 times a week, nothing too strenuous, but enough to keep her going. She is in her 80s and she has cancer, and she has survived the estimated number of years that the doctors gave her to live.
This is not to scare you, but to make us appreciate the values of exercising and fitness, now while we are younger, and then we can incorporate this into our routine, and it can stand us in good stead for our later years.
So, a little bit about me, I love to exercise, jogging, swimming, running, tae bo, kick boxing, body combat, aerobics, hockey, you name it, I’ve tried it and I love it. I also have pressures from life, what with work, schooling and maintaining an active social life, but I know the benefits, and my, are they substantial!
This column will be to guide you, to encourage and motivate us in our quest to look good, inside, and outside, that is, to do away with the African myth of not exercising. If we can take good care of our cars, bags, shoes and gadgets, why not our bodies?