Couch potato

“I have never been a natural athlete. I admire those who are. I can’t run a quarter mile without getting a stitch in my side. My natural state is curled up on the couch with a book and a cup of coffee. Unfortunately, when I give in to my natural state all the time, I feel lousy, and I’m not alone. As we learn more and more about integrated mind/body health its become apparent that avoiding regular, rigorous physical activity can exasperate anxiety, depression and a host of physical problems. Here’s a ” of the benefits of regular exercise.

Fortunately, there are some forms of activity that I’ve found that I genuinely enjoy. There’s yoga, the first form of exercise where I understood what runners talk about when they talk about “runner’s high.” I like “yoga, though there’s a style for everyone. In the Portland area, there’s a yoga studio everywhere you look. I’m partial to “, a donation only yoga studio in Falmouth. They have a wide variety of classes, wonderful teachers and a truly noncompetitive atmosphere-the way a yoga studio should be.

I’m also a big fan of “, which is essentially aerobics in disguise with really great music. The Zumba classes that I’ve attended in Portland are fun, just the right amount of challenging and very body positive. ” has affordable Zumba classes everyday. ” is a dancer and d.j. who teaches Zumba through Portland Adult Ed. She’s fabulous.

For some non-vigorous, but very fun activity, check out ” (pictured above) and “.

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