Exercise or physical activity should be on the top of everyone's daily 'to do list'. However a survey of the average person's list will reveal exercise is either excluded or so far down the list it never gets done. The percent of active Americans ranges from a low of 16 percent to a high of 65 percent. It's probably safe to figure the average is somewhere between the two.
The ideal situation would be closer to100 percent. In order for physical activity to count toward health enhancement there must be a minimum of 75 minutes of vigorous activity or 150 minutes of moderately intense activity per week. Additional, individuals should perform 2 muscle-strengthening sessions each week. Meeting these requirements can be easy when you use a little imagination.
Not all physical activities are created equally but all physical activity does afford health benefits. If you don't have the time to hit a gym each day, if the thought of running for miles each day frightens you, if the thought of performing the same old routine each day bores you, consider designing your own workout regime.
Do activities you enjoy, and that don't leave you pooped once completed. Know how to perform, and try:
- Stretching before getting out of bed in the morning
- Lying on the floor and bend and twist gently as you stretch all major muscle groups
- Shadow box in the mirror for a cardio vascular and toning workout
- Doing push-ups, squats, crunches, high knee lifts, or stretch during commercial breaks
- Walking the stairs in your home or building several times
- Doing a house cleaning circuits performing one chore after another
- Hopping up and down lightly for an invigorating, bone strengthening activity
- Dancing to your favorite music genre
- Doing deep breathing 3 times per day
- Meditating for a few minutes each day
- Doing dynamic tension exercises using self generated resistance
- Doing exercises from your couch or chair as you watch television
Getting yourself to move more than you currently do should be your initial goal; once accomplished you can add additional time or activities to your routine or decide to perform a more structured workout. There is no wrong way to exercise as long as it's safe and within your current fitness level.
Research shows individuals who exercise regularly:
- Develop fewer diseases
- Are less stressed
- Increase caloric expenditure
- Improve muscle-skeletal integrity
- Reduce the severity of existing adverse conditions
- Enjoy a better quality of life
- Sleep better
- Have more energy
- Feel better about themselves
- Can perform everyday activities with greater ease
Exercise doesn't have to be strenuous or boring to be effective, exercise is about moving more, feeling better and looking better. A few minutes each day can increase fitness levels and overall well-being. Start today, each day that passes by is an opportunity to move, feel, and look better.
Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being, while movement and methodical physical exercise save it and preserve it. -Plato