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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Being More Active

Put physical activity high on your “to-do” list.
  • Three 10-minute blocks of moderate activity during the day can do you as much good as 30 minutes of activity all at once.
  • People who spend at least 30 minutes a day being active enough to breathe a little harder are less likely to have:
    •  Heart attacks
    • Weight problems
    • Cancer
    • High blood pressure
    • Diabetes
    • Brittle bones (osteoporosis)
  • Tell your family and friends that being active is important to you—ask them to help you make time.
Being active is the answer.
  • For people with most health conditions, being physically active usually does the body more good than harm.
  • Wear comfortable shoes and drink plenty of water when you are physically active.
You don’t have to spend lots of money to be active.
  • Walk in a shopping mall, around your neighborhood, or at the local high school track.
  • Walk when you can instead of driving and save the money you would spend on gas.
  • If you spend any money on physical activity, spend it on a comfortable pair of walking shoes that fit you well.
  • Talk to a foot doctor about finding the right shoes if you have problems with your feet.
  • Don’t get “sore” about a few aches and pains.
  • The first few times you move in a new way you may feel a little sore, but after that you will feel better and better.
  • You’re less likely to get sore if you start slowly and warm up.
  • Try swimming or water exercises.
  • If you are overweight, losing a few pounds can help with aches and pains.
Find tricks to help you stick with it.
  • Pick activities you really enjoy!
  • Get your friends and family to join you.
  • Set simple goals and work up slowly. Reward yourself when you stick to your goals.
  • Try something new.
  • Find a walking buddy—you will not want to let your buddy down if you know they are counting on you.
  • Instead of trying to add extra activities to a busy schedule, make work time (at home or on the job) work for you:
    • look for chances to move a little more or a little faster.
    • at break or lunchtime, go for a quick walk.
Don’t let bad weather slow you down.
  • There are many ways to be active at home:
    • if you have stairs—make a few extra trips.
    • if you don’t have much room, you can run or march in place.
  • Grab an umbrella and a friend and go for a walk in the rain or walk at the mall.
  • After a brisk walk in cold weather, treat yourself to a nice, hot cup of coffee, tea or hot chocolate.
  • If the weather is cold, dress warmly—wear layers and a hat and gloves.
  • If it’s hot, swim, take a brisk walk in an air-conditioned building, or walk first thing in the morning or in the evening in a well-lit area.
  • If you are active outside in the heat, drink plenty of water.

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