With today’s time poor society, many of us struggle to find the time and the energy to exercise. Sure we know we should and we know it’s good for us but between work and family responsibilities, it may seem almost an impossible task to start and maintain a healthy exercise routine.
The best exercise for you is quite simply one you’ll do regularly.
The purpose of the following tips is to help those looking for a way to make a start. If you’re looking to break out of an unhealthy sedentary lifestyle, you’ve come to the right place.
- Go for a walk during your lunch break
Instead of surfing the Internet during your lunch break, get out off the office for a brisk walk. Doing so will be great for clearing your head and relieving some stress. If there is a park nearby, enjoy a brisk walk and take your lunch with you. I say brisk not rushed. Rushing only drains your energy levels because we expend a lot of nervous energy.
The best time to eat is after exercise. This is because the body more readily assimilates the protein, fat and carbohydrates you consume. After eating take a slower walk back to the office. This will help you better digest the meal you just ate.
- Take the stairs at work
On your way out for lunch, don’t use the elevator. Take the stairs instead. Same again when you get back from your lunchtime walk. Even if your office is on level 50 try taking the elevator most of the way down and finish off the last couple of stories via the stairs. Whatever you do, start out small and gradually work your way up. Walking stairs are a fantastic exercise that will hit different muscles depending on whether you’re going down or coming up. Best of all you were going out for lunch anyway, right?
- When you go shopping park your car up the back
Have you ever noticed someone circling the carpark for an hour looking for a parking spot right near the shop entrance? Often, such people are in the most in need of exercise. Around and round they go. All the while getting more frustrated and worked up.
By the time they actually get to park, they’ve wasted more nervous energy then it would have cost them to enjoy a healthy walk from the first available spot. If you’ve been guilty of this, then stop trying to score a parking spot near the entrance. Drive directly to the part of the parking lot that is empty and enjoy the exercise.
- Play with your children
Healthy children are bundles of endless energy. The next time you go to tell your children to go outside and play so you can relax and watch TV, don’t. Take your own advice and join your children in playing outside. Not only will you get much needed exercise you’ll also enjoy spending quality time with your children. They will never be the same age as they are today so don’t let the opportunity pass you by only to regret it when your children are grown. The best thing is it won’t even feel like exercise!
- Grow your own vegetables
This is another fantastic thing to do that will pay off in multiple ways. Gardening is a very healthy activity, even more so if you’re growing your own fresh herbs and vegetables. Gardening will get you outside and into the sunshine, reconnect you with nature and the earth, and is a fantastic activity to share with your children. This simple activity could have a very positive impact upon the future health of your children as they grow up and begin making their own food choices.
Consider also that the vegetables you grow for yourself will not need to be harvested by large machinery and then shipped thousands of miles to a location where they may be kept in cold storage for weeks, even months. All such activities produce greenhouse gasses and contribute to global warming.
- Get a dog
I left this tip to last and I’m not sure if I should have included it. The reason being I don’t want anyone to go out and purchase a dog only to never actually play with it or take it for walks. So if you don’t think you’re quite ready for the extra responsibility of caring for another being that is dependent on you, try my previous tips first. Otherwise buying a dog may just be one of the best things you ever did.
The type of dog you decide on should be appropriately sized for your living arrangements but big enough that it will be a lot of fun to play with and take for walks. Again this is something that I think will enrich your life. Time spent playing and walking your dog shouldn’t even feel like exercise.