Amongst the most popular New Year’s resolutions are losing weight and living a healthier lifestyle. Physical activity goes hand-in-hand with these goals. Unfortunately, it is not swimming pool season, so doing laps while taking in the beauty of the surrounding inground pool liner is not possible right now. Here are 10 tips for incorporating more physical activity in your everyday life.
- Make a commitment to be active on a regular basis. It’s not necessary to run a triathlon to incorporate more activity into your daily life. Instead, simply commit to regular physical activity. Start slowly with a brief walk and build up to longer walks, or even a jog.
- Make yourself a priority. Try to put yourself first, even if at times you are only able to commit to 15 minutes a day. Stretch or take a walk, and remember the importance taking care of yourself by staying active helps you effectively care for others.
- Take those stairs. This is a simple way to be move active. Take the stairs if you must go up two floors or less; or down three floors or less. If you need to go up—or down—a distance that you feel is too great to walk completely, walk the first few flights before taking the elevator.
- Park far away from your destination. This is another simple, effective way to remain active. No matter whether it’s the office, mall, or school, park at the edge of the parking lot and walk.
- Clean the house regularly. Tasks like vacuuming, dusting, laundry, and scrubbing the bathtub can involve walking, stretching, and lifting. Wash, dry, and put away the dishes instead of using the dishwasher as another way to incorporate more activity into chores—your body will thank you!
- Discover your favorite method of exercise. When it comes to being more active, choosing an exercise you don’t like most likely will mean you won’t stick with it. You need to find an exercise that you truly love.
- Don’t focus on the scale. For many people, the scale is a source of frustration. If the number doesn’t move down, it can result in feelings of discouragement and failure—and therefore be counterproductive. Be proud of the fact that you are moving around more and increasing your activity levels, and how exhilarated you feel after working out.
- Incorporate strength training into your regimen. While cardio is important to staying healthy, it is also important to strength train—especially as you get older—to boost metabolism and have a strong body.
- Get fit with a group. If you need more motivation to stay active and going it alone seems overwhelming, make it a group effort with family or friends. Not only will you reap the rewards of exercise, you will also be spending more time with those who are important to you!
- Wear a pedometer. Buy a pedometer to accurately count the number of steps you take each day. They serve as a great motivational tool and may prompt you to walk more often if you aim for 10,000 steps each day.
Remember, being more active will keep you looking—and feeling better—and can add years to your life. Make it a truly Happy New Year and keep moving!