Adding Physical Activity to Your Life

Increasing your activity can be done in small steps. Whether you’re a busy parent or have a demanding work schedule, physical activity can be incorporated into your life easier than you think. Find activities that you enjoy and stick with it! Learn more about ways to add physical activity to your life by following these tips:

Find What Makes You Move

You don’t need to join a gym to stay fit. Find activities that you enjoy and feel good for you. Here are some easy activities to help you get started:

  • Park far away from a store to increase your steps.
  • Get up and take a short walk during your lunch break.
  • Watching TV? During commercial breaks, stand up and do jumping jacks or run in place.
  • Cook more. Chopping, lifting, and stirring are all motions to get the body moving.
  • Doing chores doesn’t have to be boring – put on some music and dance to the beat.

What your body needs to stay physically active is dependent on your age and intensity of the activity. The Physical Activity Guidelines will help you determine how much activity you need:

  • 5-11 years old: At least 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity daily.
  • 12-17 years old: At least 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity daily.
  • 18-64 years old: At least 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity per week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more.
  • 65 years and older: At least 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity per week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more.

Overcome Your Barriers

When it comes to exercising, you may face barriers that prevent you from starting. Develop a strategy to identify your barriers and ways to overcome them. Some common barriers are:

  • Time
  • Lack of motivation
  • Fear of injury
  • High costs of exercise classes or gym membership

Develop a Routine and Stick with It

The hardest part about exercising is sustaining the activity long-term. The most important way to guarantee a routine is by knowing your schedule and making time for exercise. Using a planner or calendar allows you to block off time in your schedule to incorporate activity. Remember, daily physical activity will give you the most positive results.

Move with Others

The best cheerleaders to help motivate and support you to exercise are your friends and family. A support system can help push you to be your better self. Plus, exercising is more fun when you can do it with others! Here are some tips to move with others:

  • Look to your community to find individuals who are seeking someone to exercise with.
  • Exercise with your children.
  • Involve your partner in your fitness journey.
  • Exercise with your coworkers.
  • If you have a pet, bring them outdoors with you on a walk or run.