for your health
Don’t confuse fforts with results
By Gene Kelly
MANY PEOPLE feel that if they
have pushed themselves to
their limits, and have worked
themselves to the extreme of
pain, they then have achieved
a productive and positive
exercise session. However,
the truth is that oftentimes
this is counterproductive and results in overtrain-
ing. It is crucial to give muscles a chance to rest
Part of the challenge is balance. To avoid
overtraining, make sure you are incorporating a
variety of activities. Work with a personal trainer
to ensure proper form and to gauge your limits.
A balanced approach including all four of
the following methods offers optimum fitness
• Strength. Strength training is essential
to maintain the different types of muscle tissue:
fast-twitch for speed and strength, and slow-
twitch for endurance. Each set requires its own
systematic and specific training and recovery.
Strength training can be performed by using
free weights, resistance bands and body move-
ment exercises such as pull-ups or push-ups.
Benefits include maintenance of bone density
and muscle tissue, increased metabolism and
fat-burning ability, decreased bad cholesterol
and offsetting of chronic disease.
www.onelifecoaching.org, is a life
coach and master trainer, and instructor of the
Personal Fitness Trainer Program at Bellingham
Technical College in Bellingham, Washington.
Spotlight on Red Cross
SINCE 1943, EACH U.S. president has declared
March Red Cross Month to promote the services
provided by the 129-year-old humanitarian organization and to help draw attention to its annual fund-raising drive.
Government does not fund the American Red
Cross. To carry out its mission, this charitable organization depends on donations of money, blood
and—from a huge network of volunteers—time.
The American Red Cross mission includes
sheltering, feeding and providing emotional support to victims of disasters; supplying nearly half of
the nation’s blood supply; teaching lifesaving skills;
providing international humanitarian aid; and supporting military members and their families.
Its role in disaster relief has
had a very high profile in the
aftermath of the catastrophic
January 12 earthquake near Port-
au-Prince, Haiti. With an esti-
mated more than 212,000 killed,
300,000 injured and one million
people in need of shelter, the Red
Cross delivered immediate and sustained aid to the
victims as well as to the thousands arriving in Haiti
to assist the victims.
MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS (MS) is a
disease of the central nervous
system involving the destruction
of the protective insulation of
nerve fibers, disrupting communication between the brain and
other parts of the body. The
cause of MS is unknown, but it
is thought to be an autoimmune
disease, where something triggers the immune system to
attack the body itself.
• MS is not contagious.
• 2. 5 million people around the
world have MS.
• Approximately 400,000 people
in the United States have been
diagnosed with MS.
• More than twice as many
women as men have MS.
• The onset of MS is usually
diagnosed in patients between
20 and 50 years old.
Common symptoms include:
• Muscle stiffness and spasms
• Problems with balance and
• Bowel or bladder problems
• Vision problems
• Problems with memory, attention or problem solving
• Depression or mood swings
At press time,
had collected more
than $6.6 million in
Red Cross donations
for Haiti from mem-
bers and employees.
There are no symptoms,
physical findings or laboratory
tests that can, by themselves,
determine if a person has MS.
Doctors use several strategies to
determine if a person meets the
long-established criteria for a
diagnosis of MS and to rule out
other possible causes of reported
More information on MS
is available from the National
Multiple Sclerosis Society,