If you’re stuck in a sedentary lifestyle, or are battling obesity, there are ways for you to become more active in your everyday life. While joining a gym and having a set exercise routine is a great way to get moving, there are days when we can’t make it out to the gym due to life pressures. This is especially true for those battling obesity where mobility is a challenge, as highlighted in one of our previous posts on obesity. Besides, it isn’t always healthy to jump straight into exercise if you are unfit; always consult your doctor with major lifestyle changes.
Stay Active at a Desk Job
Being stuck behind a desk for eight hours a day makes it difficult to get in a good amount of physical activity, but there are things that you can do to get in some movement. You can start by doing some non-exercise activity thermogenesis. This basically means that you should bend, stretch, or turn for 10 minutes every hour. By stretching your body, especially, muscles that tend to cramp when sitting, you’ll see and feel subtle differences in your body. During the day you can also get in more activity by choosing to walk to a co-workers office or cubicle instead of emailing or calling them with a question or comment.
You should also take advantage of your lunch break. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you should skip lunch to go to the gym, but you should choose to do some form of activity instead of just eating in the break room. For example, take a walk during your hour off or just choose to take the stairs instead of the elevator. Simple changes like that will give you more activity than you’re used to getting.
Your commute is another time where you can choose to be more active. If you take a train or bus to work you can get off a stop earlier and walk the remainder of the way home or to the office. You can also choose to stand on your commute since you’ll be engaging your muscles by keeping your balance standing on a moving bus or train. If you drive to and from work you can choose to park further away from your office than normal so you add some walking into your daily routine.
Be more Active at Home
Sometimes when relaxing at home, you can become lazy and choose to lounge on the couch instead of doing something active. There are different things you can do to get more active at home. For example, you can work out while watching television. Make a deal with yourself to watch TV only when you’re being active. If you have a treadmill or piece of exercise equipment, you can use those while watching, but if you don’t have anything like that you can march in place or just move around the room. No matter what you do, you’ll be burning more calories than you would simply sitting and watching your programme.
You can also choose to bypass the television completely and partake in a more physical activity. Experts suggest taking one day a week to turn off the television and take a walk, play a physical game with your children, or take your dog for a longer walk than usual.
Chores can also help you become more physically active. Gardening, shovelling snow, raking leaves, vacuuming a rug, and anything else that keeps you moving will burn off some calories. You can even burn some calories while choosing to pace while on the phone at home.
Start to Exercise More Often
When you do have the time to properly exercise you should definitely do it. If you can’t make it to a gym or don’t want to invest in a membership you can walk or jog or download exercise videos on your laptop to follow. By choosing to get in some exercise each week you can reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke while improving your joint health and overall mobility. Exercise will also improve your mood, reduce stress and anxiety and boost your self-esteem.
No matter what you choose to do to become more active, anything you do that cuts into your sitting time will allow you to start to lead a healthier and more active lifestyle.
If you’re looking to lead a healthier lifestyle, and add more activity to your daily routine, consider implementing some of the changes above into your life.