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Nitza I. Alvarez doing yoga

Five Ways to Get More Active:

Simple Tips to Improve Your Health, Energy, and Life

Like most women, you probably spend a great deal of time with multiple priorities: family, work, partner, home, etc. Your health may take a backseat because you (understandably) cannot find time to exercise. You know that an active lifestyle is an important way to take care of your health and have a long life full of energy. I’m here to tell you that you don’t need to run, swim, or play team sports. You don’t even need to convince your brain that you’re exercising. You can get more active and have fun at the same time.
I personally love running and the trampoline—but any movement is better for your health than none. Here’s how to get more active without having to get up earlier.

1.

When watching a movie or listening to a podcast

Get up and walk.

Now it seems we’re all sitting down a lot more than we used to. Our lives have become more sedentary and sitting down for hours on end isn’t great for our health or our hearts. An easy way to incorporate physical activity into your day is to do it while you’re doing something else you love.

When you’re watching a movie or listening to a podcast, simply get up and walk around. A recent study published in the journal Hypertension showed that the more steps you take in a day, the lower your arterial stiffness, and therefore, the lower your risk of heart disease.

If you’re at home, you can walk on the spot or even walk around your family room. You can go up and down your stairs, or mix it up with other movements that can be done in one place like leg lifts or lunges. Before sitting down to listen to a podcast, consider taking it outside. Simply download your episodes to your phone, grab your ear buds, and take it with you as you enjoy your neighborhood, park, or trail.

2.

When watching TV

When commercials come on, stand up and walk.

Sometimes a 30 minute show turns into an hour or more of sitting on the couch. A great way to break up your sitting time during TV shows is to stand up and walk around for a few minutes. Commercials happen every 10-15 minutes or so, so use those as hints to get more active.
Standing up and walking during commercials is a great way to get your blood flowing and your body moving. You can get up and head to the bathroom, grab a heart-healthy snack from the kitchen, or go up and down the stairs.
Turning commercials into a reminder to stand up and move makes getting more active easy.

3.

10 minutes before taking your shower

Dance to a couple of your favorite songs.

Dancing is a way to have fun, release stress, lift your mood, and enjoy your favorite music. It also helps you to get your heart pumping and give it—and the rest of your body—some much-appreciated exercise. Dancing is an easy way to get more active and add more life to your days. In fact, a recent study published in Aging clinical and experimental research confirmed that regular dancing is a safe and effective way to prolong healthy aging, maintain or improve physical function, and enhance the quality of life.
You can dance alone, with your kids, or with your partner. Play one or two of your favorite songs and have fun. When you’re done you’ll feel happier and have more energy.

4.

After supper

Go for a walk with your kids (make it a family routine).

After working all day and enjoying dinner, it’s a great time to get into a more active routine. In the evening you can head outdoors with your family for a walk around your neighborhood, park, or trail.

Mix up your route by giving each person a turn to plan it out. This gives you a change of scenery every day and also empowers your kids to lead the way. You can go for 10 minutes, 30 minutes, or even an hour or more. If the weather is great, go for a longer time.

So, do yourself and your body a favor and get more active with a walk after supper.

5.

As soon as you clock out for your lunch break

Do 10-15 pushups or 25 sit ups.

You can sneak in a few minutes of activity right before you have lunch. This will help get your muscles working and heart beating just in time to enjoy your meal.
Go on the floor on your stomach and do at least ten pushups to work your arms, upper body, and core muscles. Or, go on your back and crunch up to work out your abs.

How to get more active summary

You don’t have to run or have a trampoline (but you can, if you want to!). By adding some physical activity into things you already do (like watching TV or before and after meals), you will take care of your health while you have fun. And the best part is that your brain won’t even realize that you are exercising.

I encourage you to try these tips on how to get more active to help you live long and stay young.

Getting more active is great for your heart health and adds more life to your life. To find out about our Live Long Stay Young Programs for women, you are always welcome to contact us at the Tri-County Heart Clinic and set up your appointment by calling 352-717-0220 or email us at info@nitzamd.com.

References

Alvarez, N. 2019. Heels vs. ties: Living with your #1 threat. RI-AL Consulting.

Cavero-Redondo, I., Tudor-Locke, C., Álvarez-Bueno, C., Cunha, P. G., Aguiar, E. J., & Martínez-Vizcaíno, V. (2019). Steps per Day and Arterial Stiffness. Hypertension (Dallas, Tex. : 1979), 73(2), 350–363. https://doi.org/10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.118.11987

Liu, X., Shen, P. L., & Tsai, Y. S. (2021). Dance intervention effects on physical function in healthy older adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Aging clinical and experimental research, 33(2), 253–263. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40520-019-01440-y

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