It’s that time of the year again. We are two months into the New Year. Have you kept up with your new year resolutions? Was one of your goals to be more active?
Being active is important for overall health. Physical activity increases your heart rate, burns calories and strengthens muscles and bones. More benefits of physical activity include: lower blood sugar, lower cholesterol, improved blood pressure, lower stress and anxiety and improved mood.
The American Diabetes Association recommends 150 min of moderate intensity exercise each week. That may sound like a lot, but it comes out to about 30 minutes of activity 5 days a week. Did you know that doing physical activity for 10 minutes three times throughout the day is just as effective as physical activity for 30 minutes all at one time? So, if you don’t have 30 minutes to spend exercising or you physically cannot exercise for 30 minutes at a time, try breaking it into sections of time.
Here are some simple ways to add activity into your daily routine.
Walk your dog and play fetch
Work in your garden
Clean your house
Lift weights, use resistance bands, march in place (standing or sitting), or walk around the room while watching TV
Walk at lunch
Exercise in your chair while at work
Take the stairs
Stand while on the phone, reading or eating
Talk face-to-face with your co-workers (get out of your chair to walk to their office)
Do Tai Chi
Take a walk after dinner
Park farther away from the door
Try to make an activity plan. Write down some activities that get your heart rate up and that you enjoy doing.
Here are some tips:
Think of things you like to do
Take it slow- start with 10 minutes a day and work up to 30 minutes 5 days a week
Don’t overdo it- when you are exercising, you should still be able to carry on a conversation, but not sing a song. If you are out of breath and can’t talk, you are over exerting yourself. That is a sign to slow down.
Find a friend to exercise with
Take a class
Mix it up. Try several activities so you don’t get bored with the same routine.