With the advances in technology, portable devices and transportation, our modern way of life is making us more and more sedentary. As we become less active, it comes as no surprise that we are witnessing a surge in obesity, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, osteoporosis, and several other diseases directly related to our sedentary lifestyle. Our bodies are simply not programmed to sustain such a lifestyle where physical activity is replaced by the push of a button.
Thankfully, it’s easy to obtain health benefits from physical activity. All it takes is 30 minutes most days of the week. Every minute you spend being active can be added up towards this objective. Today, I’m giving you 15 great tips to help you get there easily.
- Be your own handyman! Get ready to shovel the snow, to rake the leaves, to garden, to stack up logs, etc. Home maintenance activities work several muscle groups at the same time and are great cardiovascular exercises.
- Make every trip you can up and down the stairs — no more excuses!
- Squat while blow-drying your hair, vacuuming, washing the dishes, putting on your makeup, cooking, etc.
- Get your calves working regularly by contracting your calf muscles when you walk or standing on your tiptoes. As well as strengthening your muscles, this tip will improve your balance.
- Go play outside with the whole family.
- Get the kids involved in doing the chores — shovelling the driveway, de-icing the car, putting away the Christmas decorations.
- While the kids are busy, get active by walking, running or improvising a training course.
- On the weekends, plan family excursions whenever possible. Try snowshoeing or cross-country skiing, for example.
- Take turns in improvising exercises during ad breaks when you’re watching TV.
- Get the equipment you need to stay active at home, for example, a skipping rope or resistance bands.
- Go for a 15 minute walk after lunch.
- Take a break every hour to exercise at your desk by doing abdominal and back muscle contractions, shoulder rolls and stretches.
- Take frequent breaks and get up and walk around your house or apartment.
- If you have stairs available, make it a point to walk/run up and down them a few times a day. You’ll quickly burn many calories and strengthen all of your lower-body muscles.
- Being active should be fun, so don’t forget to enjoy yourself