Get Fit For Summer

The American Heart Association recommends getting 150 minutes of exercise each week. That might sound like a lot if you’ve been stuck in a sedentary rut during the past few months, but it actually works out to 25 minutes of activity over the course of six days.

Here are a few simple ways you can get active this summer and keep moving throughout the remainder of the year:

• Find the time. Not sure where to fit a new fitness practice into your daily schedule? Think small. Commit to doing 10-minute workouts two or maybe three times a day to get started.

• Just get moving. Walking is something most of us can do find ways to do more of during your day. Park farther away when you go to the mall or grocery store. Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator when possible. Take a walk around the block after dinner simply to pass the time.

• Try something new or different. Consider joining a volleyball, softball, or other sort of league. Learn to line dance. Take a hula hoop class. Look for activities that meet weekly over the course of several weeks. You just might end up with a new pastime, but at the very least you will have dedicated a fixed amount of time to your fitness routine.

If you’ve never tried it before, martial arts training is a great healthy activity! You can do the martial arts class with your whole family. Or you can try out Krav Maga if you want to focus on self-defense and fitness without all the traditional martial arts stuff.

Be good to your body. Take the time to warm up before starting any sort of moderate or vigorous physical activity, always work at a reasonable pace, and save a bit of time at the end of your workout for a cool down that will help return your heart rate and breathing to normal. This post-workout period is also a good time to stretch those musc
es, but be gentle with yourself.

• Don’t do it alone. Having a workout partner can help you stay motivated and accountable to your plan of doing something every day. Include your spouse and children, so the whole family can share in the goal of being more active.

• Find another reason. Walk, bike, or run for a worthy cause. Participating in charity-sponsored fitness events allows you to establish a training routine and help others while helping yourself.

• Be patient and realistic. Improvements in strength, stamina, flexibility, and balance are goals you achieve gradually and over time. Trying to force results or doing more than you are capable of is a surefire way of developing an injury that will prevent you from maintaining an active lifestyle.

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