How To Stay Active Every Day!
Are you looking for ways on how to be active? Then you’ve come to the right place!
There’s no denying, our bodies were designed to move. Physical activity is extremely important for our health, physical and mental, but it can be difficult to maintain an active lifestyle during our busy daily lives. Today, our lifestyles are typically WAY more sedentary. Especially if you are working in an office environment, chances are you sit for most of your day and if you are really under the pump, you may not even leave the office for some fresh air.
Incorporating movement into your daily routine will benefit you for the rest of your life. As part of our goal to encourage healthy habits, we will share some of the benefits of regular physical activity and the numerous ways to stay active every day!
You don’t have to do vigorous physical activity everyday to reap the benefits of exercising. Consistency is one of the most important parts of an active lifestyle, and regular exercise every day is way more beneficial than an intense workout once every two weeks. Let’s take a look at some of the health benefits of exercise!
What are the benefits of being active?
Reduced Risk of Heart Disease
Moving your body more can reduce the risk of heart diseases such as a heart attack and high blood pressure. This is a huge benefit, as there’s no doubt on the importance of a healthy heart - it does all the blood pumping for us!
Increased Lung Capacity
It feels SO great to be able to breathe deeply, feeling your body fill up with fresh clean air and exhaling all the old stale air. You will find yourself breathing deeper throughout the whole day.
Exercise, especially morning exercise, really gets you in a positive mindset. Time to be a morning person! Just 15 minutes in the morning makes you feel so good and really motivates you to make awesome food decisions for the rest of the day. Why would you undo your hard work?
Metabolism and Digestion
Exercise speeds up all your body processes. It gets everything moving and makes you feel alive. When your digestion and metabolism are working well, it’s so much easier to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight.
There’s no denying the more you move, the more fat you’ll burn. Your body needs energy to make it move. If you have no available glucose in your body then it will HAVE to burn fat. Perfect for those weight loss goals!
Being active allows you to switch off. It’s a great way to focus on yourself and give your brain a rest.
Exercise helps you sleep better! Being active during the day ensures a good, deep sleep that sees you waking up refreshed in the morning.
There is absolutely no denying that ‘movement’ of some description is super important to us feeling our best. You don’t have to smash it out at the gym 6 days a week to achieve this. Simply do anything that you enjoy that requires your body to move. For example, if we are starting out at 30mins per day. This can be split up into two 15 minute bursts – if that’s easier for you.
Below are some examples to get you started – choose the ones that you love the most:
- 30 minutes movement daily as a minimum
- Think about how to integrate incidental exercise on top of this
- Find something you enjoy
- If needed, find yourself a training buddy. Someone to help you stay accountable and to join you.
Movement Action Points
- Decide what movement you will do for 30 minutes each day (can be split into two 15 minute chunks).
- Pick one from the exercises below, or come up with your own.
- Plan when you are able to do these. Pop it into your diary or planner. Make it an appointment. It might also help to set fitness goals to keep yourself motivated and accountable to your own progress.
How can we increase activity in our daily routine?
- Housework isn’t the most exciting way to keep moving, but it has to be done. Not just your everyday cleaning, but the BIG jobs – cleaning windows, mopping, vacuuming, dusting. You can even turn these household chores into a movement-based one like doing wall squats while folding laundry!
- Gardening is a full-body workout! A full day of gardening will involve weeding, bending, lifting, and so much more, which all require you to move your body.
- Park further away from the shop entrance. A few more metres ain’t that bad!
- Carry less bags in from the car after shopping. Haha, says no one! – we all load up with as many bags as possible – which is GREAT for resistance and light strength training.
- Jump off the bus one stop earlier on your way home. Take the time to enjoy your neighbourhood.
- Cleaning out the garage often involves bigger movements like lifting, moving heavier objects, sweeping, and so forth.
- Butt Squeezes! You can do this whether you’re sitting at the office, driving or on the bus. It’s great as no one can really see, but you are getting a great butt shaping workout. Basically you just squeeze your glutes one side at a time. Just keep alternating. Squeezing such a big muscle group burns a lot of kJs and really shapes your butt.
- Help someone you know move house. If you have the time, offer to help them. It’s a great workout AND they will love you for it.
- You could schedule ‘walking-meetings‘ outdoors with colleagues.
- A little extra “time” with your partner is always a fun way to be active 😉
- Taking the stairs, or even walking up an escalator instead of standing and waiting is a great way to burn some extra kJs. For an extra butt toning idea – put all your weight in your heel when walking up, instead of your toes. If you do this you should feel your glutes (the big muscle in your butt) switch on.
- Mini workouts are great if you work in an office as it’s not good to stay sitting down for more than 2 hours. This little mini-workout will get your blood flowing, burn fat and wake you up! It can be done in the bathroom if that’s your only private place. It’s really simple… 10 push-ups – can do against the wall if in the bathroom. 10 side bends (stand up tall, lock your knees in, suck in your tummy and bend sideways as if to touch the outside of your leg near your knee – then work the other side). This mini workout will take less than 5 minutes and will make you feel amazing!
- Work on posture – Standing tall is not only a great way to burn extra kJs, but also makes you feel instantly happier and more confident. Roll your shoulders back and down. Engage your core. Pretend you have a string pulling from the top of your head and tuck in your chin.
- Last but not least – Pop the music on nice and loud, and DANCE around the house. No doubt all of us at some stage have used the broom as an air guitar or the hairbrush as a mic to music when no one is home – add some moves and you have a pretty great workout. 😀
Types Of Activities To Kick It Up A Notch...
No matter what fitness level you may be at, there is an activity for you! You could be looking to do more cardio, build muscle strength, or perhaps a mix of both. Regardless of what you do, you’ll burn calories and your body will thank you for looking after yourself through regular physical activity. Challenge yourself!
Focus on your posture – suck in your tummy, stand up tall and GO FAST! Feel the muscles in your legs working and stretching out. Breathe deeply. Take in the new fresh air and breathe out old stale air. Breathe out any negative emotions, stress or anxiety.
Completing laps – not just splashing about at the beach! Swimming is a great form of strength training that tones muscles as well as burns fat. Perfect in summer – but even in winter, there are heaps of heated pools around the place. Reward yourself with a spa or sauna at the end.
The weather’s nice and sunny, so why not go for a bike ride? Cycling is also a fun activity with others, and a great way to get out and about for some exploring. It focuses on toning your lower body and even 30 minutes on a regular basis will see you with great results! You can also workout on a stationary bike at home whilst watching your favourite Netflix show - what a win-win.
Anna’s personal favourite. Yoga is a great full body workout that also helps your mental health. You’re so focused on your postures that you really forget about all your “problems” in the outside world. It’s your time just for you – to relax, unwind and find peace. Body Balance is a great yoga style class that most gyms offer and is suitable for beginners.
Nothing beats that sweaty, out of breath, but energised feeling of completing a run. You can even start by running just 5 minutes then power walking. Another great idea is to run a block then walk a block – you will find that you improve so fast. If I am out of practice and want to get back into running, I will run down all the hills then power walk back up, until my fitness level improves.
If the gym is more your thing, classes are a great way to burn fat, increase your heart rate and tone muscles. Most gyms have such a huge selection of classes, so you can always find something to suit your schedule.
There are so many great Bootcamp style exercise sessions available now. This is originally how I got back into exercise. Usually between 20-30 people in a park or at the beach. It’s a great mix of cardio, strength training, and fresh air. It’s also very cost-effective. Great to do with a friend for extra accountability!
Free Online Workouts
You can find loads of FREE short 5-15min workouts that you can find on YouTube. Super convenient, as they can be done at home with minimal or no equipment needed. There are longer ones too, but if you can find a few 15 minute sessions, you can pop them within your week or create your own exercise program too.