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building ways to get more active

Updated: Feb 11

We have all heard it many times: exercise and general physical activity in its various forms are a treasure for our health.

Nowadays it's sometimes more difficult to move because our lives are so hectic or we simply do so many activities that require us to sit. Adults who sit less and engage in moderate to vigorous physical activity have some health benefits. Few lifestyle choices have as great an impact on health as physical activity. But how to find time & motivation to exercise?

The truth is, anyone can exercise regularly, regardless of their profession or lifestyle. You don't have to run a marathon, but you can take a walk or do a little exercise between the different phases of the day.

It is recommended to exercise for at least 30 minutes daily to feel a real effect on your well-being and this can include simple activities like taking a walk, a stretching during your break at the office or taking the stairs and saying "NO :)" to your friendly elevator while coming back home. But what is also very important: you have to stay constant and create that balance in your life, while listening to your body. Rest is as important as sports, allowing your body's muscles to recover and repair, which in turn builds strength.

Physical exercise plays a vital role in maintaining good mental health. During exercise, hormones such as endorphins are released and this contributes to a great post-workout feeling and an overall increased level of well-being.

Exercising also provides more oxygen to the brain. The oxygenation offers a substantial improvement of your intellectual performance. The transformative power of sport not only improves physical fitness but also has a positive impact on cognitive functions such as long-term memory, reasoning, critical thinking, and concentration levels.

Being physically active can:

  • improve brain health

  • help with weight control

  • reduce the risk of disease

  • strengthen bones and muscles

  • improve the ability to perform everyday activities.

But even by knowing all of this, it's not always easy to make the time to do more exercise and follow through. But there are options! Here are some tips that might be helpful to increase your phisical activity:

  • take a walk instead of taking the bus or driving

  • stand rather than sit when you can

  • park your car further away than you need to, so that you can take a few extra steps to the destination

  • stairs vs elevator, even when you work at the 10th floor! Have a monthly challenge and compete with your colleagues in a very healthy way! :)

  • exercise at home, in the morning or at evening, even for a few minutes, before sitting in front of your desk or going straight to the bed

  • give your dog longer walks

  • make new habits: going for a 15' walk before you start your working day can do wonders! Have I mentioned taking a walk after dinner?

  • join an exercise group and meet people that share the same interests in more active lifestyles

  • Do sit-ups in front of the TV, while enjoying your favorite show!

  • Do more work in your own house, like gardening or manual work

  • Think of exercise like something joyful and entertaining, as example you can dance and burn calories while enjoying good music and having fun!

Besides the tips on increasing physical activity, there is also a mindset part that plays a huge role throughout the whole process. What can you do about it?

  • Re-shape your definition of exercise & look at it with enjoyment and curiosity

  • Focus on the movement and the positive impact of it

  • Capture the feeling after the workout and reinforce it every time you train again

  • Start small and don't put pressure on yourself: make it a habit to move & be healthy

  • Recognize your efforts and be proud of every progress and learning

  • Try mindfulness: focus on the present moment of your activity and observe how it makes you feel

  • Build in accountability: make a "movement" schedule & organize your physical activity the way you plan and organize other tasks in your life.

In essence, there is no hidden secret, it's all in your hands, and legs, and core, and HEART! Your heart loves exercise so let exercise come closer to your heart! :)

START NOW implementing some small steps and get more active! Good luck!

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