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So You Want to Begin to Exercise

Since most of you “exercised” your civic duty in voting yesterday, perhaps you are considering tackling a regimented physical duty like daily exercise for the body.  We all need to do it.  Some of us (me!) need to do it more consistently.  I have found that humor helps me to think about something that creates pain and discomfort in a better light.  So, here were some “quick quips” about “exercise” that made me smile.  Hope they will help you, too.

A retired couple decided that they should walk two miles a day to stay in shape. They chose to walk a mile out on a lonely country road so they would have no choice but to walk back. At the one-mile mark on their first venture, the man asked his wife, “Do you think you can make it back all right, or are you too tired?”

“Oh, no,” she said. “I’m not tired. I can make it fine.”

“Good,” he replied. “I’ll wait here. You go back, get the car and come get me.”


Want ad reported on the Tonight Show, quoted in MSC Newsletter

“Nordic Track never used. Will trade for bread maker.”

We have courses to make grown men young and young men grown.


“I tried exercise but found I was allergic to it – my skin flushed, my heart raced, I got sweaty, short of breath. Very, very dangerous.” 


“When people ask me if I exercise I tell them I do crunches every day – especially Captain Crunch and Nestle Crunch” 


All joking aside, our bodies were made to do physical labor and to exert ourselves to get our heart rates up daily.  It is only in the last generation that we have become so immobile that we are paying a high price for our sedentary life style through various kinds of maladies and malfunctions.  This short excerpt is a reminder that our poor habits are very costly…….

More than half of Americans suffer from one or more chronic diseases. Each year millions of people are diagnosed with chronic disease, and millions more die from their condition. By our calculations, the most common chronic diseases are costing the economy more than $1 trillion annually—and that figure threatens to reach $6 trillion by the middle of the century. Yet much of this cost is avoidable. This failure to contain the containable is undermining prospects for extending health insurance coverage and for coping with the medical costs of an aging population. The rising rate of chronic disease is a crucial but frequently ignored contributor to growth in medical expenditures. Of course, the personal and financial consequences of avoidable illness are greatest for those who become ill and their families. In this research, however, we focused on the narrower, more tangible costs of chronic illness: the medical resources used to treat avoidable illness; the impact on labor supply (primarily through lower productivity), and thus GDP; and the drag on long-term economic growth. Specifically, we analyzed the impact of seven of the most common chronic diseases—cancer (broken into several types), diabetes, hypertension, stroke, heart disease, pulmonary conditions, and mental disorders—and estimated the economic costs that could be avoided through more effective prevention and treatment.   (An Unhealthy America: The Economic Burden of Chronic Disease, By Ross DeVol and Armen Bedroussian, Milken Institute, 2007.).