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Sustainable Development through Exercise to Improve Mental and Physical Health and Environmental Conservation

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Sustainable Development through Exercise to Improve Mental and Physical Health and Environmental Conservation

Introduction

We live in a world where one is more likely to die of obesity and other cholesterol-related illnesses and conditions than an armed conflict or famine.  It means that the only hindrance between the human race and immortality is the reality that a majority of the human race has not discovered the role played by physical exercises in the overall health. Being a fan of sport and health sciences, I could say that the gym is my favourite place because of many reasons. Foremost, the gym is the core of physical health for all those people with the various health goals including the loss of weight, and the regulation of the amount of cholesterol in the body. At the gym, I get to lose the extra calories, which are part of the threats to human health in this century. Secondly, the world is full of factors that accelerate stress and depression. The gym is a scientifically proven source of mental healing and serenity. While working out most parts of the body, the mind distracts itself from stressful thoughts and imaginations, enhancing the overall mental health. Exercise and physical training may be core elements of sustainable development, but environmental conservation also contributes immensely to sustainable development.

Experience in class-sustainable Development through Exercise to Improve Mental and Physical Health and Environmental Conservation

The concepts learned in this course are valuable because they have helped me understand many dynamics that define interpersonal relationships. For a long time I have sought to appreciate why different people fit differently into different groups, but after this class, I have understood, to a great degree why there are differences in interactions among different people. With the Guidance of our instructor Mr Mike Sunken, I have learned the importance of dealing with the intrapersonal issues before considering practical interpersonal relationships, as far as teamwork is concerned. Among many other things, I have learned the significance of addressing social issues with the inner self as the focal point. It resonates with the reality that social acceptance begins from the appreciation of the self. I have also learned that the feeling of self-insufficiency is not always negative because looked at from a different angle, it could be a window of transformation. In other words, the realization of inner weaknesses can be a life-defining turning point for an individual because it will not only raise the level of self-reassurance but also increase the chances of acceptance in external settings such as teams and groups, both formal and informal.

Reflection on reading-sustainable Development through Exercise to Improve Mental and Physical Health and Environmental Conservation

Faith and motivation are vital when facing adversity and situations of conflict. I believe in the power of faith, the resilient and innate drive which influences morality, personality and the physical grit in an individual. I have managed to establish and strive towards my life goals because, at the back of my mind, I have a strong background in faith that gives me hope and keeps me going, especially at my lowest moments. There are times when things get bleak, yet I have still found the determination to keep moving towards my intended goals and push myself to achieve. The future is always obscure, and I believe that it takes such an innate form of drive to keep things moving, even at the lowest moments. I am also a self-reflecting person and stay conscious of personality, heritage and other characteristics of self that define my individuality.

Piece 1

Green infrastructure is defined by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (2017, January 19th) as a resilient and cost-effective means of managing the influence of wet weather in a manner that is beneficial to the general community. The green infrastructure treats and reduces the water caused by the storm at its source to offer significant economic, social and environmental benefits as opposed to moving water produced by the storm in the urban centers from the urban buildings that are often carried out through piped water and drainage systems. During storms, rains often fall either on the streets, parking spaces, and rooftops and it cannot be adequately absorbed into the ground forcing it to drain through dirty storm sewers and gutters full of bacteria and several pollutants such as waste before they are channeled to centralized water collection points. Moreover, heavy storms result in soil erosion and flooding within the urban places and as a result, causing significant damage to people’s properties, infrastructures like roads as well as houses. I believe the re-design of water in the Elmer Avenue Green Street Project approach a robust strategy for creating environmental sustainability because of some reasons. For instance, the approach engaged majority of the residents in the area of the project; Elmer Avenue with the majority of residents participating in the project by selecting appropriate improvement they wanted to be made in their homes or city of residence. Moreover, the approach takes into consideration the kind of maintenance that would need to be conducted to make it sustainable in the long run and creates environmental sustainability in the long run by showing the immediate impacts of the project a few periods after its launch such as the clear roads after the floods.

Piece 2Sustainable Development through Exercise to Improve Mental and Physical Health and Environmental Conservation

“If you follow your in-breathe and out-breath all the way through, you’re no longer thinking. Now your mind has a chance to rest.” In as much as people breathe every time, conscious breathing is vital to exercise since it connects the body and the mind making them operate in unison. For instance, when people breathe in while doing normal work or activity that does not involve exercise, they are not thinking about breathing; rather, they are aware of the fact that a normal body process called breathing is taking place. However, during exercise, people tend to pay attention to their inhalation and exhalation due to the increased body metabolism and the need for higher levels of oxygen. Thus, it is safe to assert that a person will definitely monitor his or her breathing when exercising as it forms part the conscious thought or mental motivation that enables the person to complete the exercise. More important is the need to sync one’s breathing with the rest of body that is involved in performing exercises. This is because proper inhalation and exhalation is vital to getting the body in an optimal state where the person can sustain the high level of oxygen inspired and high level of carbon dioxide expired without straining the body. This is only possible when the mind and the body work in perfect unison to operate at optimum level. A single inhalation can get “help the mind come back to the body.” This is why you find that when people are running and feel that they are straining because their breathing is not in unison with their running, taking a deep breath and sighing normally gets their body and mind back in unison since their breathing and normal are now at a coherent level. With practice, conscious breathing proves to be quite vital to exercising.

Piece 3

“Concentration is a cornerstone of mindfulness practice. Your mindfulness will only be as robust as the capacity of your mind to be calm and stable. Without calmness, the mirror of mindfulness will have an agitated and choppy surface, and will not be able to reflect things with any accuracy.” There are many distractions in life, with stressful thoughts and imaginations being the reason why most people are distracted. Such stressful distractions can be detrimental to one’s physical and mental health. As such, people need concentration to attain and sustain an unwavering attention on a particular object of observation. Concentration can be cultivated by attending to one action, for instance, breathing and limiting one’s focus to that. Fortunately, an ideal activity that can cultivate such kind of concentration is exercise. As a person exercises, his or her focus is normally on breathing and completing the exercise routine. Since most of these exercise routines are endurance training or fat-burning exercise, they increase a person’s body metabolism significantly, resulting in high level of oxidation. The process of oxidation requires swift inhalation and exhalation to facilitate the process of releasing heat from the body. This is why people who are exercising normally concentrate on their breathing. Since the attention of the person will be focused on breathing, rarely will you find his or her mind wondering around and entertaining other thoughts. As such, through exercise, the body achieves calmness that “develops with intensive concentration practice.” Consequently, a state of calmness is ideal for enhancing physical and mental health.

Piece 4-Sustainable Development through Exercise to Improve Mental and Physical Health and Environmental Conservation

“Generosity is another quality which, like patience, letting go, non-judging, and trust, provides a solid foundation for mindfulness practice. A person can experiment and determine the impact of generosity on mindfulness practice by utilizing the cultivation of generosity “as a vehicle for deep self-observation and inquiry, as well as, as an exercise in giving.” There is a famous saying that “blessed is the hand that giveth, than the hand that taketh.” The blessed aspect of this adage can be attributed to the therapeutic effect of generosity whether it is on the person himself or on other people. Generosity to oneself entails gifts of true blessing such as self-acceptance or spending some time during the day with no purpose. The practice of feeling deserving enough to accept gifts devoid of obligation is in itself mentally and physically therapeutic. Thus, if an individual can be in touch with a core within him or her that is beyond thinking in all vital ways, he or she should let that core start radiating its energy outwardly so as to impact others through generosity.  The act of providing help when someone else is fortunate to have enough or plenty is good for the mind and as such, improves his or her mental health while making the world more sustainable.

Piece 5

“The biggest mental obstacle – in writing, in war, in life itself – is fear.” This is because fear has the capability of paralyzing people by shrinking their mental faculties and keeping them away from action. As such, fear can make writers experience writer’s block where they are incapable of formulating a story in their thoughts and relaying this story in writing or even make people refrain from taking risks or matching into battle. However, while “fear is a fact of existence,” it does not necessarily result in defeat. When a person dwells too much on his or her fears, the individual can become stagnated and later experience failure in life due to this stagnation. However, fear can also be that electric spark that brings the body back to life and shocks it into action. For instance, when a person is told by the doctor that he or she has high blood sugar level and can potentially get diabetes in a month’s time, the fear of getting diabetes can cause the person to change his or her lifestyle and avoid consuming sugary foods. Also when person moves into a new town with meager savings and rents a house, the fear that once his or her small savings run out he or she can become homeless encourages the person to look for work so as not to become homeless. Thus, while fear is detrimental to a person’s physical and mental health, it can only have adverse impacts if the person dwells on it. However, when a person is motivated by this fear to become a better person or make better life decisions, then fear becomes a good thing. It is one’s frame of mind in terms of dealing with fear that determines the outcome. A person who embraces the fear and uses it to make a positive change will not experience the adverse mental health effects that come with stressful thinking.

Pieces 6

“Tackling the challenge of sustainable urban design for the whole planet, and not just for a few privileged countries or social groups, requires a vast stage for the imagination, such as the arts and sciences inhabited in the Bauhaus and the May Days of Vkhutemas.” Green zones are crucial to solving this problem because they offer pharaonic opportunities for the monumentalization of personal visions. However, the moral question of planning and architecture can only be resolved in the sprawl and tenements of the red zones. Based on this point of view, only a return explicitly utopian reckoning can clarify the meager conditions for the preservation of human solidarity and sustainable development in the face of convergent planetary crises. In as much as a return to the utopian way of thinking evokes warning harbingers, people must be able to envision alternative strategies, social relations, configurations of agents and practices to come up with viable solutions to foster sustainable development though environmental conservations and improved physical and mental health. This notion is espoused by numerous people who have been vocal in their call for the implementation of “impossible” solutions to the increasingly entangled crises of climate change and urban poverty. As long as the rampant urbanization continues, there will always be a need for integrated and multidisciplinary approaches and novel thinking such as the develop countries financing a “zero-carbon revolution” in the developing countries’ cities.Sustainable Development through Exercise to Improve Mental and Physical Health and Environmental Conservation

Piece 7

The inner crisis in environmental politics today can be attributed to “the lack of bold concepts that address the challenges of poverty, energy, biodiversity, and climate change within an integrated vision of human progress.” It is vital to note that at the micro-level, there have been huge strides in formulating passive-energy housing and alternative technologies. Nonetheless, such demonstration projects in rich nations and wealthy communities are not sufficient to save the world. This is because these efforts have been undertaken mostly for public relations purposes so that individuals and institutions can brag about the impact they are making on the environment. In as much as these efforts by individuals and companies contribute to sustainable development through the conservation of the environment, the ultimate objective is not to watch these people and organizations publicly share their zero-carbon lifestyles in what can only be public relations moves. Instead, the ultimate goal is to bring toilets, mass transit, solar energy and pediatric clinics to poor urban communities. Unfortunately, the fulfillment of this objective has been a protracted affair because policies implemented to tackle the environmental crisis in the world are those that conveniently paint a good image of a nation in the public care, but end up having minimum impact on environmental conservation. What is required are bold concepts and policies that bring about sustainable development by registering positive impacts in reducing the effects of climate change and global warming such as overall reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. There are different approaches to tackling the inner crisis in environmental politics in the society today, but emphasis must be placed first on “going green” before other policies are implemented.

Piece 8

“Be strong then and enter into your own body. There you have a solid place for your feet.” People need to “throw away all thoughts of imaginary things and stand firm in that they are.” The biggest motivation that one needs to attain optimum physical and mental health is self-acceptance and self-motivation. Once people embrace who they are then they can move forward and attain health objectives without waiting for validation from other people. The most significant pillar of strength is that which lies inside people. Embracing this inner fortitude and using it to better oneself without considering external standards gives one peace of mind as they strive to achieve their health and development goals. Sustainable Development through Exercise to Improve Mental and Physical Health and Environmental Conservation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (2017, January 19th) Available at;

https://www.epa.gov/green-infrastructure/what-green-infrastructure , Accessed on 5th November 2018.