Ever wonder if you’re spending too much time sitting? Desk-bound jobs and work from home lifestyle can make it hard to be physically active. For adults in the age bracket of 18 to 64 years, WHO recommends at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic physical activity such as brisk walking (about 30 minutes per day, three to five times a week), or 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous exercise like running or swimming.
Regular exercise is an important aspect of maintaining our health, we all know it. A sedentary lifestyle can gravely impact our overall well-being, as research has shown, but being active can mitigate those harmful effects, helping to manage issues such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, depression, and anxiety. According to a meta-analysis published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, getting just 30 to 40 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity (MVPA) daily can reduce the risk of higher mortality associated with being less active.
But in the rush of our daily lives, it is not always easy to fit organised workout regimens into our schedules. Not only is lack of time an issue, motivation can also be a big factor. However, there are many comparatively effortless activities that can offer you the benefits of physical activity while bringing joy and being convenient at the same time.
Fun Ways Of Being Physically Active
Dance like no one is watching, and get in your daily dose of physical activity along the way. Dance workouts have become increasingly popular in the current times, be it in a class setting or as YouTube tutorials. It is not only fun to do, it also has many health benefits such as improving cardiovascular health and enhancing flexibility and coordination. Moreover, according to a review published in Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, the complex movements of dancing utilise different areas of the brain and can positively impact brain activity such as memory and attention. Put on your favourite peppy playlist and have a casual dance party with your family or all by yourself.
2. Riding A Bike
Easy mode of transportation? Check. Environment friendly? Check. Fun workout? Double-check. An article published in The BMJ suggests that cycle commuting is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and all-cause mortality. So take your bicycle out for a spin the next time you need to run an errand.
3. Walking Your Dog
Taking your dog out for a walk is good for both your pet and you at the same time. Walking is an effective cardio exercise, and research published in Current Opinion in Cardiology shows the potential of daily walking for heart health and overall fitness. Walking improves circulation, lowers blood pressure, and can boost immune function as well. Spending time with your furry friend also uplifts your mood and reduces stress.
4. Jumping Rope
A 15-minute rope jumping session can burn 200 to 300 calories, and a study from Research Quarterly. American Association For Health, Physical Education and Recreation showed that 10 minutes of skipping rope daily for six weeks had the same effect on cardiovascular efficiency as 30 minutes of daily jogging in the same time period. This childhood activity can, thus, become a fun workout for you.
5. Taking The Stairs
Taking the stairs can be an easy way to incorporate physical activity into your everyday routine. A British Journal of Sports Medicine trial showed that short bouts of stair-climbing throughout the day can improve cardiovascular risk factors in sedentary young women. Instead of elevators or escalators, if possible, take the stairs to meet your weekly recommended physical activity amount.
6. Hula Hooping
Hula hooping is low impact and can be an entertaining hobby to take up that will improve your cardiovascular health and tone your muscles. Hula hooping is also great for building a stronger core and having good posture. Start with at least 10 minutes of hula hooping a day and increase it to 30 minutes over multiple sessions for the best results.
7. Cleaning And Organising
Decluttering your space can double up as moderate-intensity exercise. The physical movements associated with household chores can provide a full-body exercise. For better results, incorporate simple poses such as squats and lunges as you deep clean your house.