The human body is designed to move. Body movement, even in small doses, has been shown to reduce blood pressure, reduce post-meal glucose levels, and is associated with better physical function in older adults. We know there are lots of reasons to increase your physical activity. Yet, if you’re like many of us, it doesn’t seem like there’s enough time in the day to add exercise to your to-do list. Welldoc’s Personal Trainer and Registered Dietitian shares 8 ways to exercise more in your day.
Do It To Feel Good
Start off with the goal of moving to feel good. With so many other goals and pressure in life, adding another stressful one may be too much. Start off with a positive mindset and a goal to feel good and you’ll reap the benefits sooner than you realize.
Make Exercise Fun
You won’t find me with a swim cap swimming laps. Yet, you’ll find me running around the lake. Finding what movement feels good and that you enjoy can take some time. Try an activity and if you don’t enjoy it, move on to something else. Plus, one research study showed that when participants viewed exercise as fun, they ate less dessert at mealtime and consume fewer snacks.
Schedule Your Workouts on Sunday
Take time Sunday evening to plan your workout time. Start with blocking off 15 minutes, three times a week. And when the reminder pops up, take the 15 minutes. You’ll likely discover that you’re even more productive after you take this time.
Think of it as an Energy Boost
In a small study of new mothers, more than half believed exercise decreases stress levels. Many of the women believed that exercise has a positive effect on health and increases energy and feelings of being healthy. “When you exercise it gives you more energy and makes you feel good”. We agree! The next time you reach for the 3 pm coffee, go for a short walk.
Exercise at Home or Outside
Two places that are free: home and outside. You can challenge your muscles with inclines, declines, and obstacles around the house or around the yard. Jumps, walks, skips, squats- all ways you can move your body without stepping foot into the gym.
Take Calls Standing Up
Take the opportunity to stand-up when you’re on the phone. The person on the other line won’t have a clue and you’ll feel better at the end of the day.
Squats When you Brush your Teeth, Stretch when you check Facebook
Find ways to move when you’re doing other things. No one is going to know if you’re focusing on your squat technique when you’re brushing your teeth. Little movements add up throughout the day.
Volunteer to be Active
Burning calories shouldn’t always be the focus of your workouts. You can get active outside and give back to your community at the same time. Walking dogs for a local shelter or cleaning up a nearby park in the neighborhood are all great calorie burners and a nice way to give back. To find great opportunities in your area, take a look at Volunteer Match.
Ways to Exercise More
You’re more likely to move more if you create small changes over time. Everyone has different ways of forming habits, so find what works for you. It’s never too late to start moving more, even if you’ve been diagnosed with prediabetes or even diabetes.