Maintaining healthy exercise habits is important to improving your overall health and wellness. However, with everyone’s busy daily schedules, fitting an exercise regimen into your daily routine is not always an easy task to accomplish. Additionally, if you haven’t consistently exercised for years, that shouldn’t stop you from beginning a routine specific to your own needs and capabilities. There are easy ways to begin to start exercising, and this article will address how to implement this healthier lifestyle into your weekly routine.
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1. Amount of Exercise You Need
The generally recommended amount of exercise is 150 min (2½ hours) each week. You can break this time down to 30 minute intervals five times a week. However, if you cannot find that amount of time in your schedule, you can even reap health benefits by exercising in 10 – 15 minute time blocks. If setting aside specific “blocks of time” makes you nervous that you won’t be able to maintain such a schedule, don’t worry about it. If you make an effort—even one that is not scheduled—to get moving each day, you will increase your health and wellness level.
The CDC has prepared a Physical Activity Guide that provides you with specific exercise information for various age groups and fitness levels. Remember that it generally takes 21 days to form habitual behavior, so be as consistent as possible when starting out. Even if you are simply walking each day, you are off to a great start.
2. Types of Exercise Regimens
There are three basic types of exercise activities that you need to add to a weekly regimen. It is good to give equal time to each type throughout your weekly exercise routine. Those three types are discussed below.
- Flexibility – These exercises include activities such as stretching, yoga, Pilates and Plyometrics. You should begin with stretching before completing all types of exercise to help prevent injury. Additionally, flexibility exercises are beneficial to increase your body’s range of motion, which will help you to become more agile when moving in your daily activities. You will reduce stiffness in your joints and muscles and also limit any bodily aches and pains.
- Strength – Exercises focusing on muscle strengthening include lifting weights and resistance training. These exercises help in building muscle tone as well as bone mass. Additionally, you will begin to improve you balance and also develop your agility which decreases the probability of falls and injuries.
- Aerobic – These exercises are considered cardio workouts that help to strengthen your cardiovascular system (heart) and increase your body’s endurance level. Some cardio exercises include brisk-paced walking, jogging, running, cycling and swimming.
Exercising the “easy way” involves finding a moderate exercise plan that works for your current skillset and abilities. For example, you do not need to feel guilty if you are not ardently following the fanatical philosophy of “no pain, no gain.” Of course, that philosophy has its place and is a viable option for fitness nuts, sports players and those who want to rapidly achieve a very high fitness level.
However, if you want to start exercising the easy way, you should focus on moderate exercise activity. This means that your body won’t become extremely sweaty and overheated. You will also begin to breathe heavier than normal, but not be completely out of breath. You will still reap many health benefits by doing some physical activity each day. After all, some daily movement is better than none at all.
3. How to Add Easy Exercises to Your Routine
In order for you to be effective in adding easy exercises into your daily routine, you need to change your perspective and focus on changing your lifestyle. For example, don’t become discouraged because you cannot go to the gym or won’t be able to stick to a specific weekly routine.
The main goal in starting to exercise the easy way is to concentrate solely on making “constant movement” part of your daily life. Review the listing below to ascertain where you can add more “steps” and “movement” into your already existent daily routine.
- Home – There are specific activities that are reserved for home life such as house cleaning, laundry, cooking and yard work. Figure out ways that you can add extra steps to those daily tasks so that you have more movement in your normal activities. For example, when doing laundry, take half the load of clothes from the dryer upstairs at a time and then go back for the second half. This may seem like a waste of time. However, any time you can add more movement to your routine, you are investing in your health. When you remove snow, use a shovel rather than a snow blower. Again this will take more time, but it is another simple way to add physical activity to your day.
- Work – At work, make a decision to take the stairs rather than elevators. Take brisk walks during your lunch hour. Park further away in the parking lot so you have a longer distance to walk to the front door.
- Play – During any “play” times with friends and family, add more brisk walking into the routine. Again, always choose to park further away than you need to so that you give yourself the chance to walk more. If you do not have a dog to walk or kids to play with outside, invite some friends to take a yoga or aerobics class with you.
You can also incorporate couchersizing (exercising while sitting on your couch) into your daily TV watching routine. You still get to watch your favorite shows while also adding exercise into your routine the “easy way”. There are simple ways to add couchersizing into your daily routine by doing leg lifts or torso twists and also lifting weights.
Remember to take it slowly until you increase your strength and endurance levels. Have fun and implement movement into your daily life so that you stick with an exercise regimen that is specific to your needs.
Have you ever tried any of the methods above to exercise the easy way? Did you find them useful and effective?