We, as humans, sure like to make things complicated don’t we? Take being physically fit for example. There are a crazy amount of books, webinars, workshops, videos, gyms, studios, and on and on, out there to help us get and stay physically fit. it has become a multi-billion dollar industry!
It’s fun to try new activities and certainly convenient to be able to exercise at home watching a Youtube video, so I love that there are so many options. It does make me feel though that I should be doing some intense form of exercise every day if I want to stay fit. That can feel overwhelming sometimes.
On the other hand, being physically fit doesn’t need to be difficult. Putting aside 30-60 minutes each day dedicated to ‘working out’ is great, but many of us aren’t in a position to do that . . . or don’t want to do that! We don’t need to carry any guilt around with us for what we’re not doing or compare ourselves to anyone else. We just need to become aware of what we need to do daily to be and stay physically fit and then choose whether we want create new habits, or not, and embrace our choice.
To keep things simple, there are four basic categories of which to be aware. The more frequently we take action, make healthy choices and form new habits in each of these each day, the healthier we’ll be. Think of it like brushing your teeth, bathing, and eating. Somehow we manage to accomplish those things every day . . . well, at least most days!
This just means to get our heart pumping. Use it or lose it applies all of these areas. When we have some aerobic exercise daily, it helps our heart to become stronger. This doesn’t have to be running 10 miles (although it can be), it can also be carrying our groceries into the house, taking the steps instead of the elevator, or going on a walk.
Recommended each day: 10 – 15 minutes. Walking, bicycling, swimming, jumping jacks, hula hoop, jump rope, trampoline.
If we want to have strong muscles and expect them to perform without instant fatigue, we need to help them. Resistance exercises using weights and elastic bands are obvious, but you can also build muscle strength by carrying a child (be sure to use both arms), carrying groceries, pushing a wheelbarrow or doing some push ups.
Recommended each day: 10 – 15 minutes . Swimming, bicycling, bands, weights, push ups, lunges, Pilates, Yoga.
3. STRETCHING AND BALANCE
It’s so important to have healthy joints, especially as we age. Flexibility refers to the range of motion around a joint, which helps to prevent injury. Stretching is a great way to gain more flexibility as well as get the oxygen moving through our bodies.
Recommended each day: 10 – 15 minutes. Yoga, Pilates, floor exercises, toe touches, reaching top shelves of cabinets.
If we want our cars to perform at their best, we make sure to fuel them with quality gasoline. Our bodies are no different. If we want our body to perform well, we really need to fuel it with quality food, drink, vitamins and minerals and LOTS of water. Choose your fuel wisely, it’ll make all the difference.
Be sure to eat smaller amounts every 2.5-3 hours rather than 2 or 3 large meals. This will help your body function at its best. Breakfast ~ snack ~ lunch ~ snack ~ dinner ~ snack
Recommended each day:
Breakfast ~ snack ~ lunch ~ snack ~ dinner ~ snack
General caloric intake is 1500-2400/day for women and 2000-3000/day for men, although there are many factors to consider such as age, bone structure, height, lifestyle, overall health and levels of physical activity. You can use a calorie calculator such as the one found in the link below to find your specific suggested amount.
If you have any health concerns, always check with your physician before starting any new program.
Add these simple activities to your daily life and reap the rewards!