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your look ● ﬁtness
By Sharon Turrentine
Let’s Get Physical!
Realize your potential by discov-
ering what physical ﬁtness can
do for you
W hen preparing for competition, we want to look,
feel, and be our best at all times. The clothes, the
hair, the makeup, and the accessories all have to
be just right. We want to feel conﬁdent about
the way we present ourselves. Taking care of our
personal level of physical ﬁtness will do just that.
Physical Fitness. First of all, just exactly what does that
mean? It does NOT mean starving to get thin. It does NOT
mean working out 4 hours a day. It does NOT mean sweat-
ing and jumping up and down in a class to loud booming
music exclusively. Don’t misunderstand—sweating is good for
you, very good for you. However, there are limits as to how
much you should stress your physique. And there is much
more, so much more, to physical ﬁtness than that.
PHYSICAL FITNESS CONSISTS OF THREE EQUAL
PARTS 1) Nutrition
This is the hardest part—eating right. This does not mean
going on a “diet.” The word diet, deﬁned in the dictionary, ba-
sically means “habitual nourishment.” By deﬁnition, you can-
not “go on a diet.” You are already “on” a diet. It may not be
nutritious, but whatever you are eating “is” your diet. So, to
improve your nutrition you must “change” your diet.
We learned about proper nutrition in the third grade. It
hasn’t changed. The needs of the human body have not
changed: balanced meals, proper portions, watching the fatty
foods and the sodium (something we pay way too little atten-
tion to). You know, when that fork full of food is headed to-
ward your mouth, whether or not it’s good for you. You don’t
have go to out and purchase a bunch of “diet books” to ﬁnd
And those low carb diets? Carbs are your brain food and
your energy food. Once you deplete your body of the necessary
amount of carbohydrates, you can get to the point where you
cannot even remember what day it is. It takes brains, good
sense, and stamina to win. Be a winner, and be kind to yourself.
(By the way, I do not consider anything that comes in a
paper bag from a drive-thru window as food.)
2) Aerobic Activity
This can be fun. Aerobic activity is any activity that is
done for 20 minutes or longer, nonstop, that elevates your
heart rate. You can, of course, take aerobic classes. If you like
that, go for it, by all means. But, if you don’t like that, don’t
choose it. You won’t be able to stick with something you
don’t enjoy. Walking can be considered an aerobic activity.
Not strolling (did I say strolling?). My walks are about 3
miles per hour—on hills. That can get you going, trust me.
There is also biking, hiking on very rough terrain, all sorts
of activities. For many of the women I have written body
shaping programs for (and there are a couple thousand out
there), running stadium steps is a staple aerobic activity. Yep,
you can do that, if you so choose. Find something you like,
and do it ﬁve or six days out of the week. Consistently. Con-
sistency is the key.
3) Strength Training
Here is where you can tone, ﬁrm, and really shape your
body. With the proper forms of exercise in weight training,
you can shape a muscle in the direction you want it to go. You
can make it shorter and thicker for more curves, or longer and
leaner for less curves. Different parts of our bodies require
different shapes we want to make. Depending on your needs
and wants, the possibilities are endless. You can’t get taller, of
course, but with the proper posture you can appear taller. And
good posture pays off in a lot of ways.