The older you are, the harder it may be to stay healthy. Many adults are concerned about their health and want to exercise more, but struggle to find the time to make it to the gym.
Even if you are unable to work a full exercise routine into your schedule, there are many small steps you can take to improve your health.
While it might not seem significant at first, doctors recommend moving for at least 30 minutes a day. Working more movement into your daily routine not only improves both your physical and mental health, but it can also help if you have issues falling asleep.
At first, moving 30 minutes each day may seem like an easy goal. While basic movement does qualify, it can be surprisingly difficult to hit the 30-minute goal, especially if you work in an office job and spend the majority of your day behind a desk.
Keep reading to find several handy tips to incorporate more movement into your daily routine.
Around the House Activities
One sneaky way to add more movement into your daily routine is to add small exercises when you are at home.
When you are watching TV, take a short walk around your house during the commercial breaks. If you really want to improve your health, you can even incorporate small workouts during these breaks.
Two great exercises that require minimal space are pushups and squats. Both of these exercises work your core and can be performed right next to your couch.
If you do not want to work out during the entire break, consider doing a set of ten instead. If you are streaming and do not have any ad breaks, pause your show between episodes, whether you want to work out or just stretch your legs around the house.
If you are on the phone, walk around while you talk. Cleaning is also a good way to add more movement into your daily routine while also improving your home. Activities like scrubbing a tub or even washing dishes involve a surprising amount of movement.
Outdoor hobbies can also be great for getting in more movement at home. Even something low-energy like gardening still involves a fair amount of walking and bending.
If you have a pet, bring them outside to play or take a walk.
Adding Movement at Work
Adding movement at home might be easier because you have the freedom to set your schedule, but it can become a bit trickier while you’re at work.
In an office, you only have so many opportunities to take a break and stretch your legs. However, there are other ways you can get some extra movement at work.
One option is to take the stairs instead of an elevator. Even if you only go up a few flights, this gives your body a good workout.
During your lunch break, try and find an outdoor spot to walk to each day to enjoy your food. If you normally pick up your food, see if there are any local restaurants you can walk to.
You can also add extra movement by parking further away from the building.
If you happen to live close to your work, you can even walk or bike to work each day. Not only can this improve your health, but it can also cut down on fuel costs.
If possible, arrange walking meetings with your employees. Walking meetings are good for movement as well as keeping the brain stimulated, which can improve workplace productivity.
If you want to get on the boss’s good side or make more friends at work, you can offer to pick up coffee or lunch orders. Even if you are driving to the store, you will still add movement by picking up the orders and then delivering to everyone at the office.
There are a few other small steps you can take to get extra movement at work, such as printing from a different location away from your desk or using the restroom at the other end of the building.
A standing desk can be a great way to add movement, whether you are at work or home. Standing desks are tall, adjustable tables that require you to stand behind them instead of sitting in a chair.
These desks can make it easier to take small breaks to walk around. There are even specialized mats available to make standing for long periods comfortable.
While you are adjusting to using a standing desk, you can start out using it as a traditional desk for a portion of the day, then shift to using it as a standing desk for the remainder as your legs adjust.
There are even specialized standing desks that also allow you to exercise. Some variations include a treadmill or bike desk, that naturally incorporate movement into your desk routine.
Because these variations can be more distracting, it is recommended to use them at home instead of work. These variations only require minimal movement, and are not as demanding as a treadmill or bike you would use in a gym.
Fitness Tracking Apps
For many adults, the most challenging part about adding movement is finding motivation.
After a long day of work, it is common to feel exhausted, and the last thing you may want to do is find extra chores to perform around the house.
If you have trouble with motivation, consider investing in a fitness app. Fitness apps help you schedule exercise time and might make it easier to track your movements.
If you are competitive, you can even compare your movement scores with your friend and family. Having a visual number showing your progress helps you see the difference that your extra movement makes.
Not all movement has to involve traditional exercises. A great way to add movement to your life is through dancing.
Dancing is a fun activity, and there are many ways to incorporate music into your life. If you are at home, you can create a playlist on your phone. If you are cooking, there are plenty of opportunities to listen to music and groove to the beat of your favorite song.
You can also go out dancing with your friends over the weekend for even more dancing exercise!