So, going to the gym isn’t quite your thing? You’re not alone. Whether it’s a lack of time, finances, or confidence, there are a variety of factors that keep well-intentioned people from making the trek to a fitness center. If you feel like this is the one roadblock that’s keeping you from having a body you feel comfortable in, there’s good news! There are endless options to staying fit and active than running on a treadmill or pumping weights. Here are some of our favorites:
1. Get Into Nature
Did you know that physical activity outdoors can trick your brain into thinking it is exerting itself less? Translation: It’s easier. In a study from Ohio State University, participants were monitored while walking both indoors and outside, with the outside results supporting increased “theoretical determinants of physical activity.” You also feel better after being active outside! Exercise in nature exposes you to Vitamin D, fresh air, and improves your mood. So carve out a little time to take a stroll around your neighborhood, a lap around your office complex, or explore a trail at a nearby park.
There’s no greater feeling than helping others. But have you thought about how serving benefits you physically? In addition to making new acquaintances and reducing stress, volunteering can also work towards improving your health. Maybe your place of work is sponsoring a park clean-up day? The simple act of gardening or picking up trash will help get you up and moving around. If there is a cause that you are passionate about, offering to distribute flyers or obtain signatures throughout a neighborhood is a great way to meet your walking quota.
3. Deep Clean
It needs to get done, so why not make an event out of it? Round up your (preferably non-toxic) cleaning supplies, turn on some music, and start tackling those corners of your house that haven’t been touched in months. A good deep clean for 30 minutes can burn close to 150 calories for an average sized person. And afterwards, you can feel fabulous in your fabulously clean home!
4. Play with your kids
Spending more time with your children is already at the top of your list. Why not use it as an opportunity to get your body moving as well! Push them on their bikes, pull them in a wagon, or strike up a game of tag in your backyard. Don’t have any kids of your own? See option #2 above.
5. Go Dancing
Is there a way to stay active that is more fun than dancing? We challenge you to think of one. It’s the best excuse to get dressed up and spend an evening out with friends. Nobody even has to know that you are secretly exercising. You don’t have to hit a club to get your groove on either. Signing up for a class like ballroom, ballet, line-dancing, or Zumba will also do the job!
While we understand that every person’s physical limitations are different, we recommend that each individual use judgment when approaching a new fitness routine and may even want to consult with their healthcare provider regarding exercise that is is suitable for them. The goal here is to share that there are many creative ways to stay active and something for everyone! 30 minutes a day is all you need and a great place to start. Now, go forth and get moving!