Studies have shown that out of every 10 Americans, 7 do not get adequate physical activity. Setting and fulfilling physical activity goals is important and not doing so can have dramatic health ramifications. Cancer, heart related illnesses, strokes, and diabetes have all been associated with lack of enough physical activity. Staying active is important when it comes to maintaining health and staying in shape.
One does not need to undergo extremely strenuous physical activities for them to be healthy. Whether it is a daily routine or a structured and supervised physical activity, all exercises contribute to overall well being.
Our 10 favorite tips
When it comes to meeting your physical activity goals, it can be helpful to do some research and find what works for you. The following tips are things that we’ve found work, but feel free to make adjustments and remember that everyone’s fitness journey is unique.
Here are some helpful tips that may help you achieve your physical activity goals:
- It is important to first consult your doctor whenever you want to start a physical activity program and you are either overweight, have long term health condition, are at a high risk of having heart related diseases, or have been inactive for a long time. Checking in with your doctor is the best way to make sure that it’s safe for you to take part in whatever form of exercise you’re planning.
- During the first days of starting your physical activity, it is important not to strain too much. Undertake moderate physical activities to increase your heart rate, build your endurance levels, and burn calories. Some aerobic exercises include jogging, dancing, and jumping rope. Brisk walking or stair climbing are also great ways to get your heart rate up and ensure that you’re giving your body the exercise it needs to be healthy.
- As your fitness and endurance levels increase, you can gradually begin to increase the intensity and duration of your physical activity. A great goal is to be able to work out for 30-60 minutes at least 5 day in a week. For those who cannot sustain a full 30 minutes workout, you can break it into 3 -10 minutes intervals.
- Be sure to select physical activities that are fun and not tiresome. You can use music to keep yourself entertained and motivated. Finding the right types of activities will ensure that you stay motivated and on track. While it is true that some days are more challenging than others, exercise should be enjoyable in general. If you’re struggling with your routine, consider finding friends who want to exercise with you.
- Incorporate a variety of physical exercises, trying not to rely on one type of activity. The more types of physical activities you have will help ensure that your exercise routine never seems boring.
- Wear comfortable clothing and footwear for the kind of physical activity you undertake. Your clothing should also be properly fitted and weather appropriate. Investing in the right attire for your favorite type of exercise is a great way to get some motivation and be sure that you’re prepared. Finding a new shoe that you like or a new pair of yoga pants is a great way to be sure that you’re ready.
- Find a safe environment and a convenient time for your physical activity. Even though it is important to make exercising a habit, it’s best to be flexible. Keeping an open mind is one of the best ways to make sure that you don’t experience burnout. Exercise is something that should fit into your life, so find ways to make sure that it fits into your routine most days. On the days when you’re not able to do your plans, consider taking a quick walk or going for a jog.
- Use a pedometer to measure the distance you go on foot. You can set a long term goal of 5 miles or 10,000 steps, for instance. Monitor your daily achievements and improve each day until you achieve your goals. Being able to track your progress can be incredibly encouraging. The visual representation of your improvement over time will show you how rewarding it is to exercise regularly. Meeting your physical activity goals starts by taking the first step and then continuing to make the decision to pursue a healthy lifestyle.
- Become a team player and undertake physical activities like walking and bike riding with your family members, colleagues, and friends. You can also become an active role model for your kids, showing them what it means to live a healthy lifestyle. Being involved in the fitness community is an excellent way to be held accountable and find like minded people. Making friends who enjoy moving is a great way to stick with your plan and find the encouragement you need for the difficult moments.
- Lastly, don’t forget to keep track of your activities and achievements. There is no better motivation than when you achieve your goals. Creating rewards for yourself can be a fun way to ensure that you continue making progress and working towards your goals. Rewards can range from a smoothie to a vacation, so get creative and think about what really matters to you. Writing down your goals and keeping your rewards in mind can be helpful and push you to work hard.