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FCF Hoosier Holiday Gift Guide Day 5-Better Body, Longer Life

‘Tis the season for giving, right? So we here at funcityfinder.com in Indianapolis felt that on top of giving you the best we’ve got when it comes to what’s going on in the Circle City, we will give you a little help in trying to find that perfect gift for the special someone on your list. On December 4, and  the next twenty days we will give you twenty ways to show you truly care. In the true spirit of Hoosier pride, we will try to suggest only that which is home-grown or handmade right here in Indiana.

Day 1-the binding bee
Day 2- Tickets for Sports of All Sorts
Day 3- Indy Eateries
Day 4- Arts for Young Hearts and Old Farts

DAY 5- Better Body, Longer Life

Now that I have your attention, please allow me to explain. We are not talking about making sizable donations to the bank accounts of cosmetic surgeons and other medical professionals. Nope, we are talking about doing this the old-fashioned way.  That means stretching out your hammys, lacing up a pair of sneakers and moving yourself from one place to another manually. Indiana is ranked the 11th most obese state in America, so there are a lot of people in need.

There are several different strategies here so lets take a look at them one by one. If none of these work for you, check out our Indianapolis Health page for other ideas, get creative but get active.

Gift to give: Sneakers.

Now, I realize that giving someone exercise paraphernalia is not the easiest thing to do. The receiver might take offense to such an offering, so make sure you have a stable relationship. Otherwise you might be getting some unexpected exercise of your own when you have to dodge a flying pair of shoes. To help may I suggest this: if you are gifting workout sneakers to a woman, tell her they are the same pair that Hedi Klum wore to drop all of her latest baby weight: if gifting sneakers to a man, just tell him they are the same type Peyton Manning wears.

My suggestion is buy yourself a pair of sneakers and tell whoever you are giving a pair to, the two of  you will do it together. Indianapolis is blessed with some of the finest outdoor workout facilities in the country, such as the Monon Trail and White River State Park. All you need to do is get yourself there and go. No matter if you are a runner or a walker, make a one year deal to truly work at this and you’ll be amazed with the results.

You and your workout buddy will start to see that not only will you feel better and look better, but you will want to eat better too. Exercise and a healthy diet go hand in hand, and as soon as one becomes a factor in your life, the other will subconsciously try to catch up. Also, getting out and exercising will reintroduce you to the natural happy pills your body provides called endorphins. If you haven’t tried them lately, let me tell you, they are great.

Indianapolis is filled with miles of beautiful outdoor parks to walk, run or bike on. Above is a small section of the Monon Trail

Indianapolis is filled with miles of beautiful outdoor parks to walk, run or bike on. Above is a small section of the Monon Trail

No matter where in Indianapolis, or the surrounding area you live, we can show you where to go and workout for free. Just check out our Indianapolis parks page for an extended list. Not only will you rediscover the beauty that Indianapolis and the whole state of Indiana possess, you will find that many of Indy’s parks have free workout programs for you to join.

Sure it is cold and nasty outside this time of year, but you will be amazed at the beauty that still surrounds you. Other advantages to starting now are you most likely aren’t in bikini body condition  so the more clothes you can put on the better, right? If it’s colder out, there will be fewer people to have to shy away from, and if you can do it when it is cold out, you can definitely do it during the summer.

Gift to give: Bicycle.

Please allow me to offer a plea to parents of Indianapolis children everywhere. This year for Christmas, instead of getting your youngin a video game that simulates all the cool things that can be done on a bike, just get them a real bike. Actually, get the whole family a bike and pedal as a whole. Again, there are so many places that Indy offers to take in your surroundings while giving the pavement some poundings, you would be hard pressed not to find a park nearby.

Kids are not the only ones who can benefit from a bike this Christmas. Cycling is a relatively low-impact workout that moves muscles you probably forgotten you had. Even if it has been years since you last straddled a self-propelled two-wheeler, you’ll be up and riding in no time. There is a reason and plenty of truth to the expression “it’s like riding a bike.”

Downtown Indianapolis has recently made a huge push to becoming a pedaling person friendly city, adding miles of new bike only lanes, so your limitations are nearly  unlimited. The only thing I strongly discourage you from doing is giving one of those, one-piece spandex biker outfits in cahoots with the bike.  Yes, it looks fine on Lance Armstrong…but you are not Lance Armstrong.

If taking the time out of your daily schedule to go off and frolic in the wood is just not a reality, bring the woods to you. Stationary bikes and treadmills are great for several reasons. First, they can simulate all kinds of obstacles to increase or decrease the strain of your workout. Second, they make working out in the winter much more comfortable. Third, some cost so much you can guilt someone into using it. Fourth, they can be set up in front of the TV, so you won’t miss a beat will moving your feet. And finally, although you might think having a bulky piece of exercise equipment setup in the living room is an eyesore to company, that same company will secretly be jealous of how active and uncompromising you are in your pursuit of physical fitness.

Gym memberships are not as expensive as you might think. And really, in the grand scheme of things, isn’t $20 dollars a month towards a healthier, happier life worth it. If you don’t know what to do in a gym, set up a few sessions with a personal trainer, and in no time you’ll be leader of the pack. You will also realize that you are not alone. More often than not, gym memberships are held by people just like you with the same fears and goals in mind.

For a list of local facilities where you can pump iron, swim laps and sweat allover someone else’s equipment visit our Indianapolis gyms page.

Sorry I am not Ponce de Leon, and that this is not the fountain of youth. However, it is a few suggestions to not only help those you care about, but motivating yourself to get up, get out and get active. Just think that if you are able to get serious about your fitness, next year for Christmas you’ll have to ask for all new clothes,because the old ones don’t fit and you’re done with those.