Moving your body doesn’t have to be hard and it doesn’t mean you have to head to the gym for a hardcore workout either. Living an active healthy lifestyle is actually a lot easier than you may think, and it starts with being mindful of our everyday habits.
Think about your average day for a minute, where do you park your car when you get to work or the grocery store? What do you do on your lunch break? How do you spend your weekends? Taking time to think about where and when we can sprinkle physical activity into our everyday routine is a great step to creating healthy habits.
Being physically active can help to keep our bodies strong and conditioned, our energy levels high, our weight and metabolism steady and our immune system functioning properly; to help fight against colds, flu, disease and other unwanted health conditions. It also helps regulate our mood and boost our brainpower, alleviating stress, providing better mental clarity, sleep and overall health.
So, how can we practice being physically mindful and create new healthy habits?
1. Walk everywhere you can.
I live out in the sticks so driving is a must, but when I get to town I park in one spot and walk my way to completing errands. And trust me, depending on how far you walk and the terrain in your city or town this can be a killer workout. Especially if you’re toting around a few heavy grocery bags from the local health food store!
2. Park far away.
This one is easy because you can do it where ever you drive. I always park at the far end of the lot, you get a mini walk out of it and these mini walks add up over time. Not to mention it often saves my car from pesky door dings.
3. Take the stairs.
I know, I know, you’ve heard this one a million times. But seriously, take the stairs! Your heart, legs and butt will thank you.
4. Active lunch hour.
So many of us plop back down in front of our computer screens to eat lunch. Instead, get off your butt and give your eyes (and brain) a much-needed rest from the screen. Even a 15-minute power walk will make you feel more energised. You can also search out a quiet place to practice yoga, hit the gym, go for a run, or run/walk the stairs a couple of times. Oh, and don’t forget to eat that healthy lunch you made!
5. Plan your weekends around the outdoors.
If you’re outside you’re probably moving your body. So plan to spend at least one day on the weekend enjoying the great outdoors. Go for a walk in the park, plan a hike, go camping, jump on some cross-country skis or hit the slopes on a snowboard. Not only will you be moving, but you’ll be getting all the benefits that the fresh outdoor air has to offer. And no excuses about cold weather, you own a coat, right? Great, use it!
You can see how being mindful about physical activity adds up. I hope these tips will help inspire you to be more mindful and active in your everyday life. Now get up, get out and get moving!