During these uncertain times of the Covid Pandemic, we are all more aware of our health and are looking for ways to stay healthy and prevent us from getting sick. Do you want to feel more healthy, have more energy, feel better about how you look, and even add years to your life? Get off the couch and into your tekkies! We all need a balanced life – good eating habits, enough sleep, and regular exercise.
The lack of regular exercise is recognised as the single most important contributing factor to mortality, more than obesity, smoking, diabetes and any other factors.
Does it mean you have to go to the gym and pump some weights?
Exercise does not necessarily mean you have to go to the gym. It can be any moderately intense activity, 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week (150 minutes per week). This can include aerobic exercises to fight disease, strengthening exercises to protect bones, easing back pain with flexibility exercises, and preventing falls with balance exercises.
What will you gain by doing that?
Regular physical activity at the correct intensity:
- Significantly improves your health.
- Reduces the risk of heart disease by 40%
- Lowers the risk of a stroke by 27%
- Reduces the incidence of high blood pressure by almost 50%
- Reduces the incidence of diabetes by almost 50%
- Can reduce mortality and the risk of recurrent breast cancer by almost 50%
- Can lower the risk of colon cancer by over 60%
- Can reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease by one-third
- Can decrease depression as effectively as medication or behavioural therapy.
How to start and keep up? 7 steps to success:
- Make it pleasurable and memorable: Do the activity that you love. The chance that you will keep up with something that you love, is better. If you like the outdoors, choose an exercise that you can do outdoors. If you like water, go for swim or aqua aerobics. Consistent low intensity exercises will always triumph over high intensity exercises.
- Age is only a number! Do something that will challenge you, but within your age limit. Do not do exercises that induce any serious pains. A bit of stiffness at the start is normal.
- Make your own goals and be patient with it: Remember – results take time. make short-, medium- and long-term goals that are realistic and reachable.
- Know your limits: do not compare yourself to other people. This is your body, your life, and your journey.
- Take notes: make notes of when you do what, at what heart rate, distance or time and try to improve on it every now and then.
- Get friends and family involved: it is always more pleasurable to train with someone and be committed to others than just yourself. Join a walking club if you can. Take up bowling!
- Get your priorities right: if you do not look after yourself, you cannot look after others. You are the number one person and remember – exercise can save your life!
Change the way you feel about exercise, challenge yourself with new exercise ideas and choose a new exercise lifestyle that makes you feel on top of the world. Exercise is more than just well-being, it is LIFE.
For more information visit www.medwell.co.za