Just Add Music

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Are you off to a good start with your fitness goals for 2018? Fitness should be a lifetime commitment but it doesn’t mean you have to go to extreme measures to reach your goals. Being more active will help you lead a healthier life and to age more gracefully. Whatever your goals are, we hope we can provide a little help and encouragement along the way.

Have you noticed that listening to music can make you feel better? Music can be a powerful tool when we exercise. Research suggests that listening to upbeat and energetic music will often distract you from the pain associated with exercise and will make it easier for you to workout for a longer time.

gym eqipmentListening to fast music while working out, makes you want to move around more without even realizing it, helping to burn more calories. People often report they get bored more quickly with their workout when they don’t listen to music.

So, why does it feel like you enjoy your workout more when you listen to music? Listening to music causes your brain to release those feel-good chemicals, such as dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin. These chemicals help to dull pain, boost your mood, and make you feel less tired.

Here are a few more tips to make your workouts more fun:

  • Relive your childhood. Think of activities you enjoyed doing while you were younger. The first thing that comes to my mind is hula hooping and jumping rope.
  • Join an exercise class. Find a fun and energetic workout class. You will make new friends and have a ready-made support group to help you achieve your goals.
  • Recruit family members and friends to be your workout buddies. With our busy and hectic schedules, we often promise to spend more time with those we care about. Why not include them in our exercise time? Exercising and socializing together sounds like a win-win to me.
  • YouTube it! If you find yourself needing a quick workout, but are stuck at home, don’t worry. YouTube offers loads of free workout videos that you can do in your living room within a small amount of space and without equipment. Variety is the spice of life, and there’s a multitude of videos to choose.
  • Just Dance. Dancing offers many healthy benefits, including improved balance and coordination, gets your heart pumping, burns calories and is a whole lot of fun. Put on some comfortable clothes and get moving in your living room.

cloggersThe N.C. Cooperative Extension of Swain County is proud to partner with community members to offer several opportunities to be more active. We offer clogging classes for all levels of dancers from beginners to intermediate to competitive. Kerry Cannon brings experience and enthusiasm to this energetic Appalachian dance.

If you are looking for a low-impact activity and a great chance to meet new people, why not try Line Dancing? Bob and Cheryl Thomas will have you dancing across the floor to a wide range of tunes, including country and western, beach music and some of your favorite oldies.

The Cardio Dance Boxing series includes a fun and high-energy dance exercise, a toning and step aerobics class, and a full-throttle HIIT class. Shaylina Cochran will lead you in these lively workouts that provide a chance to improve cardiovascular endurance and increase muscle tone.

Please call (828) 488-3848 to learn more about how to register for these classes. Don’t forget to check our website, too!

North Carolina Cooperative Extension is an equal opportunity provider.