If you’re looking for ways to be fit without trying, this article is for you!
Do you find it difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle, especially if your job doesn’t need loads of physical activity? Sometimes, a gym routine can be too expensive, too crowded, or just too much hassle.
Unfortunately, sitting or lying around promotes weight gain. However, regular movement keeps your metabolism active. It’s your metabolism that uses your body’s resources (i.e. fat storage) to fuel it.
Although everyone is different, your metabolism’s activity along with your food choices and intensity of movement will determine how quickly you’ll see results.
Use these three simple tricks that can get you fit without trying.
Walk every chance you get. If there are stairs, use them. If a destination will take between 30-40 minutes to walk to, do it!
Stretching increases your breathing capacity. It can also burn many calories when it’s done the right way. Why not take up pilates or yoga? Join a socially-distanced class or find an established instructor online.
Stretching will not only keep you fit without trying, it does wonders for your mindfulness. Discover how many calories you burn by simply doing nothing here.
Laughing is an excellent way to be fit without trying. It engages your abdominal and oblique muscles, toning your waist and strengthening your midline.
Have you ever laughed so much your stomach hurt? You probably just burned about 200 calories! Skip ab day and watch a comedian for an hour or two. Ha ha!
Minimal effort, maximum success! That’s what we’re all about here! Which activity will you use to get f-i-t?
Walking daily has a plethora of benefits that are just too good to ignore…
Ah. Daily walking. Fresh air, pumping through your lungs. Your blood is coursing through your veins and the sun is splashing on your face through the trees. Taking your daily government-sanctioned walk. Ain’t it sweet.
Then again, the drizzle fills your hoodie, you smash into deceiving puddles by mistake and you can’t decide whether to turn in or to power through. Welcome to walking for fitness.
I know. It seems like a bit of a stretch to deem walking as something worth leaving the house for. “I walk around my house every day.” “Why is being outside so significant?”
I’ll tell you why.
It’s more than for your fitness. Walking is something that we are systematically designed to do. Our bodies are engineered for ease of movement. Flexibility is an extension of our regular capabilities. So when you apply this capability to nature, it produces astonishing benefits on our physical and mental health.
“WHAT DO THE BENEFITS OF WALKING DAILY ACTUALLY DO FOR YOU?”
A benefit of walking daily is that it’s a massive stress reliever. It can lower your blood pressure and increase your focus. If you’ve decided to take up a new skill such as learning a new language, DIY crafts or creating online content, your motivation towards productivity will be ramped up! If hardcore sleeping has become your thing, walking will not only kickstart your energy levels, it’ll also improve your ability to fall asleep faster, promoting a deeper and longer sleep cycle. Talk about giving back to yourself in a kickass way!
WHAT HAPPENS IF I DON’T WALK DAILY ENOUGH?
When your walking is disrupted and the air is stagnated – i.e. walking up and downstairs in your home, then stopping for hours – it doesn’t give your body a chance to relax in one session. Instead, your body ends up releasing small doses of endorphins inconsistently which, ultimately, increases your production of cortisol, (the stress hormone). By actively taking a 20-30 minute daily walk, you’re giving your body the chance to release endorphins in one go, a much healthier method of destressing.
Did you know:
It’s possible to burn 100-300 calories in 30 minutes just by taking a brisk walk!
When you take a brisk walk, you run the amazing risk of increasing the number of your immune system cells or ‘natural killer cells’. This happens by breathing in organic compounds called phytoncides that are released by trees. These cells are what combat disease and even many types of cancer. Imagine if you start jogging!
Furthermore, brisk walking increases your positive feelings. By allowing your mind to wander, your brain gets the chance to switch off from the working issues of the day and just enjoy what it’s processing: nature doing its thing.
HOW SHOULD I WALK EFFECTIVELY DAILY?
Heel to Toe
Start from the heel of your foot, rolling it forward and lifting your heel, applying weight onto your toes. This prevents injury to your ankles and helps you to keep your balance.
Check Your Posture
Face forward and look ahead. Your spine should aim to be as straight as possible with your head, neck and shoulders in a relaxed state. Your knees should have a slight bend and your arms should be able to swing effortlessly based on how fast you’re walking. All of these movements will become subconscious so try not to worry about ticking these boxes every time you step out.
Tune Into Your Surroundings
Okay, we’ve got the walking thing down. Now, let’s take this opportunity to treat our senses. What can you see? What can you smell? Can you hear anything? Can you feel a breeze? How do these things make you feel? By getting in tune with your surroundings, your breathing becomes regulated and your cortisol production decreases.
Walking in any climate will grant you these benefits, although, walking in sunlight allows our bodies to create Vitamin D, an essential vitamin for muscle health and metabolism. Just make sure you slap on the sunscreen though. It shouldn’t have to be relentlessly sunny for you to be motivated to take a walk outside, but it certainly helps.
Being cooped up isn’t a good thing for anybody, even if currently it’s the best thing to do right now. I can also understand if you’ve developed a deep cultivated fear of leaving the house because of the virus, but as long as you’re honouring the two-metre rule and you’ve got some sanitiser gel, you’ll be okay. Trust me. Go get that nature. Happy hiking!