Squash is the healthiest sport on earth (not according to me, but to Forbes–see below). Squash gives you an amazing cardio workout and keeps you agile, fit, and strong. Additionally, it is the funnest and most social sport around. Squash players from around the world can always welcome a visitor and develop friendships through a common passion. No other sport can do that. I have had the chance to play squash in 22 countries and have developed many wonderful friendships along the way–for example, this photo shows me with my friend Vitaliy Yevdochenko in Kiev, Ukraine.
In 2003 Forbes first published its list of the 10 healthiest sports, based on a calculation using four physiological components of fitness, plus injury risk and energy expenditure.
Forbes chose to compare the sports based on four basic physiological components of fitness: cardio-respiratory endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance and flexibility, which is just a sample of the 15 factors of success in sports. For each component they asked fitness experts (coaches, personal trainers, competitors and exercise physiologists) to rate them on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being “excellent,” 4 being “darn good,” 3 being “good,” 2 being “not bad” and 1 being “nothing special.” Injury risk was rated on a scale of 1 to 3, with 3 being “low,” 2 being “so-so” and 1 being “high.” The energy expenditure rating was based on the calories expended by a 190-pound person over 30 minutes (rates from ACSM), and rated on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being 450+ calories, 4 being 400-450 calories, 3 being 350-400 calories, 2 being 300-350 calories and 1 being 250-300 calories. Calorie burn; whenever possible, we selected the rate for “moderate” or similar intensity. The scores for each component was tallied to arrive at an individual rating for each sport.
Here is how the final list came out:
- 1. Squash, 2. Rowing, 3. Rock Climbing, 4. Swimming, 5. Cross-Country Skiing, 6. Basketball, 7. Cycling, 8. Running, 9. Modern Pentathlon, 10. Boxing
Football (though some call it soccer) is the king of sports! Does the name Maradona ring a bell? Yeah, I thought so. In an unscientific survey I did for fun while traveling in Europe, I asked random individuals just one simple question: do you know who Maradona is? It was evident that most people across Europe and the globe instantly recognize Maradona. For those who do not, more than likely they do recognize Pelé. Football is much more than a simple sport, it is the “beautiful game,” the pride of nations, the greatest and most global team sport.
“The World Cup is the most widely viewed and followed sporting event in the world, exceeding even the Olympic Games; the cumulative audience of all matches of the 2006 FIFA World Cup was estimated to be 26.29 billion with an estimated 715.1 million people watching the final match, a ninth of the entire population of the planet” (FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. 6 February 2007. Retrieved 10 April 2016).
Music is something that I also enjoy greatly. I truly have a very broad taste in music and enjoy many genres (though I confess that 80s music is the best!). Given the fact that I am bilingual and bi-cultural, I enjoy music in English and Spanish equally–it just depends on the mood. Oh, by the way, I also love Brazilian music.
Oaxaca with its people, food, weather, traditions, etc., is definitely one of my passions. As they say, there is no place like home, and I just happen to be lucky enough to be able to call home one of the most fantastic cities.
Don’t believe me? Plan a trip and judge for yourself.
Good food is something that I truly enjoy. Well, as I said, I am from Oaxaca, the culinary capital of Mexico. I enjoy all sorts of dishes, fruits, vegetables, meats, etc. Other than Oaxacan food, I enjoy foods from just about every country I have visited, yes, including “pastel de choclo,” from Chile.
Education is my other passion, and I am blessed that one of my passions is also my job.