As the cold starts to bite it can be difficult to stay active, especially as our instincts may be sending us into hibernation. But whatever the weather exercise is still an important part of a healthy lifestyle, we just have to be a bit more creative about how to motivate ourselves to achieve this potentially enjoyable staple.
Do you know how much exercise we really need? Half an hour 5 times a week or 2.5 hours in total of specific exercise, as part of our 10,000 steps a day advisory is ideal, but what are the options:
If you prefer the great outdoors then once wrapped up you can enjoy; fresh air, changing vistas, the opportunity for intense competition or quiet contemplation and the relaxing benefits of being in nature. Do try to get out during daylight hours though and on the darkest days when getting out the door is at its most challenging it helps to develop a support network.
Even if you exercise together virtually, take part in a team sport, belong to a walking group or become a dog walker/owner.
The gym can be a great option as once inside and warmed up you can; walk, run, cycle, lift weights or swim unimpeded by the elements. But if this is not for you then why not try an online or socially distanced exercise class. As long as you can get yourself started you will most likely stay for the full hour.
Or you could consider; Dance, Tai Chi, Badminton, Indoor Bowls etc., there are lots of options that may be more your cup of tea, such as:
For those that loathe exercise but love shopping an indoor complex gives plenty of opportunity to stretch your legs without getting your feet wet, just remember to pick up the pace and take the stairs rather than the escalator.
If you cannot contemplate going out then set up a mini gym at home or use technology to your advantage, could you;
Work-out to exercise videos on YouTube, get some active use out of your family games console, follow a DVD, or have a disco in your kitchen.
If all else fails then sign up to take part in a sponsored challenge so you feel obligated to stick to your training regime, this can seriously boost your motivation.
Whatever our limitations we can usually find a suitable option, it may of course be best to get some advice on this front though, especially if you are new to exercise or gearing back up after a long lull or an injury. But don’t despair there is something out there that’s right for you.
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