Why Pilates Just Might be the Best Workout for Nurses

Why Pilates Just Might be the Best Workout for Nurses

No doubt about it, nursing is an extremely demanding profession. Not only is it mentally demanding, but physically demanding as well. After a stressful 12 hour shift working out is the last thing a nurse may want to do because their body aches from a hard days’ work. Keeping healthy by working out is something all nurses know to do, but just don’t, either because of the long hours or the feeling of being hit by a Mack truck after their shift.

Incorporating a Pilates routine a few times a week can help decrease strain, strengthen muscles and prevent potential work-related injuries. Take these benefits of a regular Pilates routine into consideration:

No impact: This is a no-brainer when it comes to working out. As a nurse your body probably takes a pounding during an average shift. Your workouts shouldn’t cause more damage to your body than an average workday.

Pilates uses your own body weight as resistance for the workouts so you don’t have to worry about any jarring movements causing damage to your body.

Increased flexibility: Pilates incorporates many stretches that, over time, will increase your flexibility. Flexibility is important since nurses typically do lots of bending and stooping during their shift.

Strengthen core/improve posture: When you strengthen your core, your back is automatically stronger as well. Having a strong core and back helps nurses when you have a job that involves a lot of lifting and physically assisting patients. In addition, an improved posture gives makes you stand taller and gives an illusion of weight loss.

Tone: Although Pilates is a no impact workout it does allow for full body toning. Pilates makes one more aware of their body in general and the muscles used to carry out movements during a workout. Most all exercises in Pilates involve very slow and controlled movements meaning that you must also contract your core at all times. Small, slow, controlled movements can help tone your body in ways you would have never imagined. 

Lose weight: In addition to all of the other awesome benefits you reap from Pilates, you can lose weight! Depending on which type of Pilates workout you do, you have the potential to burn massive calories. Pilates can be divided up in two basic types: ground work and machine (or Reformer) work. The workouts carried out on Reformers use pulley’s and springs to add more resistance to the already challenging workouts increasing the calorie burn factor.

In addition to working as a FNP, Nachole Johnson is a freelance copywriter and an author with her first book, You’re a Nurse and Want to Start Your Own Business? The Complete Guide, available on Amazon. Visit her ReNursing blog at www.renursing.com for more ideas on how to reinvent your career






Jumpstart 2014 Resolutions in December

Jumpstart 2014 Resolutions in December

In another month, most of us will announce to family and friends the resolutions we plan to pursue, achieve and maintain in 2014.

You know the drill: Bright-eyed and speaking with conviction, you vow to eat better, lose weight, exercise more, stress less and be an all-around healthier person. Most likely, your resolutions are the same every year.

Change the Pattern

Why not shake things up a bit and get a head start on your New Year resolutions? If it takes three weeks to develop a habit, and you begin working now on annual goals, imagine how far along you will be when the glittery ball drops and kisses are exchanged at midnight on January 1.

Consider this: Between now and New Year’s Day, you could drop a minimum of four pounds by cutting 500 calories a day or burning them with exercise. Feeling really motivated? Cut back and exercise to lose two pounds a week, or eight pounds before the year is out, which could be enough to allow you to toss the Spanx or at least feel hopeful that the day is on the horizon when you can.

Paying attention to the scale during the holiday season will also keep you from piling on extra pounds from seasonal food and drink. But counting calories is not enough. You need to move and sweat. 

Too cold to go to the gym? Walking, jogging or running outdoors not going to happen? Increase your pulse without leaving home. No special gym memberships or clothes are needed. 

Move More at Home 

Burn fat by marching in place while watching a favorite television program or two. Start off by only marching during the commercials to build your stamina.  Push yourself to go longer each day until you can march or jog through an entire hourlong episode. Not only are you off the couch, but something positive comes out of watching bad reality TV.  

Whether you want to quit smoking, get more sleep or find a satisfying job, why wait another month to begin the steps needed to achieve your goals? Use December to jumpstart your resolutions so on New Year’s Day the only promise you’ll make to yourself  is to keep the momentum going.

Robin Farmer is a freelance writer focused on health, education and business. Visit her at RobinFarmerWrites.com.