Including physical activity in your every day schedule can be a difficult task, especially if you are at work or school all day. However, physical activity is essential for physical and mental health, especially when you are living with heart disease, stuck at home during this global pandemic, or during the long winter months. These simple and easy changes and additions throughout the day can reduce stress, lower cholesterol, and aid with weight control as we try to live healthier every day.
- Taking the stairs. Most do not have elevators in detached homes, so stairs are already a part of their everyday. If you live in a condo, though, the stair climb may seem far too inconvenient. While it takes a conscious effort to opt for the stairs, after daily practice, you will notice that you will be able to reach the top of the staircase without experiencing shortness of breath, no matter what floor you are on. Out in public? Look for the stair signs rather than opting for escalators.
- Taking a walk. Take a break from work or school every hour to get up and walk around your house or the block. It is known that sitting for extended periods of time can negatively impact your health and increase the chances of heart disease and obesity, so get up, walk, and stretch throughout the day. Your heart will thank you – and you will feel more focused and productive when you get back!
- Adding movement to daily chores. Turn on some music, dance, and focus on your posture and different muscle groups as you get your housework done (did you just sit up a little straighter reading this?). Not only does this make housework more fun, but movement and good posture improves your physical health! It will not even feel like physical activity.
- Tracking your daily steps. Seeing your daily steps can motivate you to move more with personal milestones, plus it is fun! Set goals and watch how easy it is to achieve them, just by walking throughout the day (or doing circles around the dining room to get those last few in before bed).
Starting your day off with physical activity can set you on a more positive path for the rest of the day. Incorporating physical activity can feel like a hassle, but these easy tricks will positively impact your health without it feeling like work! Every little bit of healthy living helps to keep your body and mind healthy, and adding physical activity to your daily routine makes it easier to create a healthy living habit.