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Why many drop-out from exercise
Saturday, October 18, 2008

Not all people are averse to exercise. In fact most try to start but fail to continue, even if they try different kinds. They are overly zealous at the start, only to drop out after a few days. When asked, they simply give lots of reasons in justification for dropping out, such as they are too busy it cannot fit in their schedule, it is not safe anymore where they used to jog, the gym is too far from where they live,etc. etc. etc. But the reason may be far deeper.

Exercising is the key to healthy life. If you can give it at least ten to fifteen minutes everyday then you are doing something great for your body. It is the cheapest means to a long life if coupled with a healthy diet.

I have been exercising ever since I graduated from medical school, stopping only during illness, pregnancy, and puerperium. I regularly do it four to six times a week, forty-five minutes to an hour. It is not easy. There are days that I feel so lazy to start but I push myself to do it. The benefits it can give my body is enough reason to make me move.

To start with, do not set long-time goals. Give yourself only three weeks to a month of regular exercise. Once you have seen the changes in your body, I am very sure that you will continue for the rest of your life. You don't want to ever go back to your previously bad shape.

Do something that you will surely enjoy. This way you will have no reason to stop. It can be dancing, swimming, biking, or aerobics.

Do it on your free time while watching the news or your favorite soap. A few minutes wont hurt your schedule.

As your progress, you can stretch the time to a few more minutes thus challenging your body even more. If possible, add other variations. Weight-lifting is best for the elderly.

Vary your routine daily. Doing the same kind of exercise everyday makes your body adapt. Thus, your weight plateaus and no changes will be noted.

It doesn't hurt to try. Please give yourself a chance.

photo credit here

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posted by Amelyn R. Rafael,MD @ 9:31 AM   3 comments
Experiences with the Unknown
Sunday, October 12, 2008
I don't exactly know what to call them - ethereal beings, ghosts, or spirits.But I am reminded of them whenever I stay in a hotel, for it is there where I often encounter them. And sometimes in our own house. I believe that in every place there is this "someone" who watches over it. That is why we pray for these souls for them to find peace.

No, I don't actually see them. But I know when there is one in a place, for I can feel "it". It is the feeling of being watched, of having a silent companion, of a presence. Luckily, I have yet to encounter one who makes sounds or moves objects. That will surely cause me to flee, the fastest I can ever imagine.

My colleagues have already told me a lot of stories regarding their own eerie experiences in Subic hotels. In one, a couple, both doctors, left their three kids in the hotel while attending a conference. Their kids had a great time playing with kids from the next room. Upon arrival at the hotel that night, the couple heard from the kids how they enjoyed playing with their new friends - the kids from the next room. The following day, the kids were already looking for their friends even before the couple could leave for the day's conference. They were knocking on their neighbor's door but nobody answers. In desperation, they asked their parents to ask the hotel management if the next-room occupants had already left. They were told that they were the only occupants of that floor since they arrived.

Another story, also in a hotel in Subic. A group of medical representatives checked-in in a hotel to attend a company meeting the following day. Two of them were assigned to a room. They were both tired from the day's work and from the long travel so they decided at once to bathe then sleep early. Apparently, the one who asked to bathe first changed his mind without telling the other. He went outside instead to have a smoke. The one who was left inside the room was getting impatient why his partner had to take a bath that long. He was hearing the shower being turned on and off, the water splattering, and other sounds we normally hear when one is in the shower. He then decided to text his partner to ask him what' s keeping him from getting out of the shower and to tell him to make it quick and finish it. Immediately he received an answer: "Pare, nandito ako sa labas nagyoyosi."(Friend, I am here outside having a smoke.) He hastily gathered his things, ran outside and went home that very night.

It was also a nighttime in May when me and hubby arrived in a hotel in Subic. I jokingly asked the attendant if there are spirits around before we were shown to our room. He answered that there are none of those in the length of his stay in the hotel. My hubby had to attend a dinner meeting that night upon our arrival so I have no choice but to be left alone in the room. I tried to busy myself and divert my mind to other things by watching TV, unpacking, getting ready to bed. But I can really feel that I was not alone. As I have said I do not see but I can feel. In the corner of the room was a table and a chair, and that's where I can feel it. I tried to turn up the volume of the TV but it didn't help. So, I turned it off and I started talking. I was telling that I was not a threat, that I was just there to have a place to stay only for two days, and I was asking for peace during our stay. I then recited the Holy Rosary aloud. After which I did not feel anything anymore up to the time we went home.

How about you? Do you have experiences of this sort?

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posted by Amelyn R. Rafael,MD @ 3:55 PM   5 comments
A time for bonding with kids
Monday, October 06, 2008

Ever since school started this June, each member of my family had been very busy - the kids with their studies, MTAP reviews, and preparations for the different school activities; me and hubby with our work. Of course, we were yearning to have a break, something that would change the monotony of things. And the invitation by Merck for a summit in Baguio City last week just came at the right time - no long exams and projects to rush for the kids. It was a time to take a break.

Whenever me and hubby attended conventions, conferences, scientific meetings in the past, whether out of town or just nearby, we never brought the kids with us. It is not because we don't want them to enjoy. They were just too young then and I worry a lot for their safety when I have to leave them in the hotel room. I figured they might get bored and might go out of the room and start looking for me.

Everything changed after our PSP convention in Tagaytay last year when a colleague told me that kids are meant to be taken anywhere - where the parents go, the kids go. And so this time, they went with us. It was a precious time for the whole family. More so, it was bonding time for me and the kids for I stayed with them most times while my hubby had to attend to several lectures for diabetes and hypertension. Yes, I was not able to update myself with these topics but it is nothing compared to the grand time I had with my kids.

We stayed in The Suites, an extension of The Manor hotel. It was not fully finished yet. But there were a few rooms ready for occupancy and we stayed in one of those. It was great, the food is excellent, and the weather is lovely. We strolled and played games in the park, went shopping, dined out in the kids' favorite spots. It was fun and full of memories. Now I know my kids are ready - to join us in conferences out of town, to fend for themselves when Mom is away, and to take care of each other. I just know we will have more of this in the future.


posted by Amelyn R. Rafael,MD @ 3:29 PM   0 comments
About Me

Name: Amelyn R. Rafael,MD
Home: San Fabian, Pangasinan, Philippines
About Me: Family Physician, and Associate Professor (Clinical Anatomy and Medical Physiology)
See my complete profile
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