Three Ways to Move More

We all know that physical activity is good for us, but it can be a challenge to fit fitness into a busy schedule. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that adults accumulate 150 minutes of moderate (or 75 minutes of vigorous) physical activity every week. This may seem like a lot, but every minute adds up! Activity bursts of five minutes here and there throughout your day  accumulate to help you reach your movement goals.  Here are three simple ways to add more movement to your day!

Set an Alarm Use an app on your smart phone or set periodic appointments on your calendar to remind yourself to stand up at least once every hour. Movement breaks can include standing to stretch, a quick walk around your office, or some chair squats to really get the blood flowing!

Be an Ele-voider If you think you don’t have time to take the stairs, think again! A study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal showed that taking the stairs rather than waiting for the elevator saved about 15 minutes each workday. That’s a 3% savings of time per workday, which could translate into more productivity as well as increased fitness.

Take Your Breaks Break times and lunch hours are the perfect opportunity to get some movement in! Make it a goal to get up and walk for 10-15 minutes each day during lunch. After the work week you will have added 50-75 minutes of activity to your weekly total! The added bonus is that mid-day activity has been shown to boost mood and increase one’s ability to manage stress.

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Too much chair time?

Move

There are lots of reasons we don’t move much. Truth is…most of them are excuses. Our bodies are built to move not to mold into an office chair or recliner. Make a resolution to move more. Any chance you get, you move! Your body will thank you.

Tips

What’s your favorite way to put more action into your day?

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Ho-hum doldrums

Dog

Are you with me? Last night I looked at my activity tracker at 10:00 p.m. and it read 3256 steps. I sighed. I did not leap up and walk in place. I did not chastise myself. I did not list the reasons for so few steps. I just sighed. I have a bad case of the doldrums. It’s actually difficult to remember the last surge of real energy I have felt. Some would call this the doldrums, some the winter blues. Either way, it just feels like marking time till things get magically better.

Well enough! Here are some tips to get you out of the doldrums

What is your favorite way to dump the doldrums?

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Don’t be a bear.

Hibernate

Hibernating this winter? Had enough of the snow, ice, and sub-zero weather? Are the kids turning on you? Stop! When winter weather forces you indoors it’s time to deal with all that pent-up energy. Find creative ways to get and stay active during these cold months. It’s a challenge, but you can conquer those winter doldrums!

So, before you settle into the recliner tonight… consider these ideas

And remember…spring is coming!

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Are you road worthy?

Fall

Fall happened this week. I had to search for a bed quilt, coat, and socks; things I haven’t seen since May; my feet screamed. It got me thinking…am I “road worthy” for winter? I know I’m ready for the fun things; I’m not so sure I am road worthy for challenges like staying active, winter sports, countering sugar with good nutrition, and fending off the flu and colds…just to name a few. I’m not even sure I can withstand a cold, late-night football game! So, here are some tips on becoming “road worthy” and for staying radiantly healthy this fall

  • Find your winter clothes NOW; remember how to dress in layers; get out your flashlight, gloves, boots, hat, hand warmers…
  • Keep moving – treat your senses to fall; walk in the leaves, cycle the streets, take a hike, visit a park; get outside and breathe in fall
  • Schedule your activity time; put it on the calendar  just like you do any other important event
  • Get a flu shot…and just in case, lay in a supply of Kleenex and cold decongestants
  • Sign up for a new fitness class or sport, one that can be learned and practiced indoors during the cold weather
  • Get 10,000 steps a day; use the stairs, stand at your desk, walk during breaks or lunch time…have a walking meeting; go out of your way to move
  • Manage your stress level; being indoors during the winter plays havoc with stress. Meditate, do yoga, read for enjoyment, spend quality time with family
  • Know your why; it’s easier to stay motivated if you have a reason beyond the moment
  • Watching more TV? Stay in motion at least during the commercials. Do lunges, stretches, and free weights
  • Holiday hint: Portion Control. It starts with Halloween!!

What’s your best “road worthy” tip for fall?

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Housewalking. Try it.

Housewalking

No time for the gym, for a run, or for a dog walk? Housewalking could be your thing! Housewalking is literally walking around your house whenever you can. It’s practical, available, affordable, requires no child care, no fitness trainer, no special clothing…and it can be done in all kinds of weather! Have you considered the irony of paying a membership fee to walk somewhere else when you have perfectly good floors at home? Think about it.

Here’s how you start

  • Get a fitness tracker to track your steps and calories burned
  • Get a spill-proof water bottle to carry around
  • Decide: do you want to walk in place or around your house; either works
  • Decide: which of your at-home activities should be automatic walking opportunities?
  • Put an “are you walking?” note in areas where you typically just stand or sit…the recliner, the stove, the sink, the fridge
  • Set a goal – try to rack up 500 steps each time you housewalk
  • Examples of housewalking opportunities: on the phone, watching TV, cooking, brushing your teeth, listening to music, cleaning
  • Get friends involved – start a challenge
  • Make it FUN!

Share your experience housewalking!

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