Shape Up US is an organization that works to end the epidemic of obesity across America. Their campaign and community-based efforts hope to make it easier for people to make healthier choices. In addition, they support individuals and communities that work towards healthier lifestyles that address obesity and its associated comorbidities.
January is Shape Up US Month and a time for all of us, especially seniors, to focus on our health and ensure we’re taking care of ourselves and each other. It’s also the perfect time to get excited about the future—because what better reason could there be to start a new fitness routine than knowing that it will help you live longer?
The campaign focuses on helping people who want to improve their health and wellness through physical activity, nutrition, and community engagement. The organization also focuses on creating opportunities for children to learn about healthy eating habits at an early age, as well as educating adults and seniors about how they can become more active in their daily lives.
Why Should You Care?
The health benefits of being fit are enormous. Studies have shown that regular exercise can help prevent and manage various conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
In addition to these physical benefits, there are also mental and emotional benefits associated with staying active: studies have shown that exercise can help improve mood, reduce stress levels, and increase self-confidence and self-esteem. Being fit also means feeling better about yourself and your body image.
In 2001, the United States Surgeon General reported that over 60% of the country is obese. In 2002, Creating a Difference, a nonprofit organization, was founded to raise awareness about healthy lifestyle options. Creating a Difference was renamed Shape Up US in 2009 and held its first Health and Wellness expo. As of 2020, 41.9% of adults have obesity in the United States.
Set Up Health Goals for 2023
- Set a goal for yourself. Whether it’s losing five pounds or increasing your strength by ten percent, setting an achievable goal will help keep you motivated.
- Get active. There are many ways to get moving that don’t require leaving home: taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking around the office instead of emailing someone across the hall, or even just taking short walks during your lunch break can go a long way toward improving your health.
- Eat healthy. Follow expert advice on how to eat well while still enjoying delicious food—you’ll be amazed at how much better you feel.
Tips for Staying Healthy
Here are some tips for staying healthy:
- Drink more water. It’s good for your skin and keeps you feeling full longer, so you don’t overeat.
- Get out in the sun. Vitamin D is essential for bone health and helps us feel happy and energetic.
- Exercise regularly. Even if it’s just walking around the block once a day, this can make a huge difference in how you feel at the end of the day. You’ll probably even sleep better.
- Try not to eat too much sugar—it can cause inflammation in your body, which leads to all kinds of problems down the road, like diabetes or heart disease, so try choosing foods without added sugars whenever possible (or at least limit yourself).
The Shape Up US campaign offers tools and resources for those ready to begin making a change in their lifestyle, including healthy recipes and tips on shopping for more nutritious foods.
Tips for Staying Fit
Here are some tips for getting fit without breaking the bank:
- Buy used equipment. You can find fantastic deals on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace if you’re willing to put in a little extra effort. If you want to avoid looking for used equipment yourself, ask friends if they know anyone who might have something for sale.
- Look for free classes in your area. Many local gyms offer free classes for new members or those who sign up for a membership. You might even be able to find free classes online (check YouTube).
- Ways to exercise without spending money. Try walking instead of driving places (or at least take mass transit), walk around with friends instead of sitting at home.
The organization wants people to know that being fit helps you live longer and feel better and makes you smarter! They’ve found that people who exercise regularly are more likely to do well in school and make good grades. Exercise also helps improve memory because it stimulates blood flow to your brain, enabling you to stay alert and focused on what’s happening around you—even if you’re tired or stressed out.
You don’t have to do anything crazy like run marathons or lift weights every day—you can start with small changes like walking more often instead of driving somewhere whenever possible (or even just parking farther away from where you’re going).
Why Should I Participate?
It’s easy! All you have to do is make small changes in your life—like adding more fruits and vegetables into your diet or walking around your neighborhood instead of taking public transportation—and over time, those small changes will add up into big ones (like losing weight). Here are some tips to get started:
- Find a workout buddy. Working out with someone else will make it more fun and motivating for you. You’ll also be less likely to skip workouts if someone is waiting for you at the gym or park.
- Start small and work your way up from there – don’t try to do too much too fast! Instead, change one thing at a time, like switching from soda to water or walking instead of driving. Or maybe even take the stairs instead of the elevator? Just remember that every little bit counts!
- Make sure you’re eating healthy foods as well as exercising regularly – it’s crucial not just for weight loss but also for overall health!
We can all make a difference by helping each other get healthy. Wishing you a health-filled 2023!