Fun ways to be active every day without going to a gym
Working out in a gym or playing a sport is great, but being active is about so much more than that. Think of it as how you can use your muscles more in your everyday life. If you drive to work, sit at a desk all day and use all the conveniences of modern life, you probably need to move more.
Making the time to be active with our busy lives can be challenging, but start with 10 minutes and try to build up to at least half an hour of activity a day. Some activity is better than none. And if you spend a lot of time sitting, set reminders to stand up and stretch.
When you think of your day in these terms, it’s easier to get active – it doesn’t have to be expensive or inconvenient. And regular physical activity can help control weight, boost your mood and improve sleep too!
Try one of these ideas each week. You'll find your favourites and probably think of new ways to be active too.
✅ Swap 30 minutes of television for a 30‐minute walk each day.
✅ Fit activity in throughout the day. Add a bit here and there by doing bicep curls with bags of groceries, lunges down the hallway, calf raises while brushing your teeth, desk push‐ups before sitting down and wall sits while on the phone or reading the paper.
✅ Designate certain TV shows as exercise programs. While you’re watching, lift weights or do sit‐ups, walk on a treadmill or ride a stationary bike, jump rope or stretch.
✅ Try a new activity for each season. Ideas include golf, tennis, cycling, hiking, mall‐walking, dance, yoga and swimming.
✅ Take the stairs and avoid the elevator.
✅ Walk at least 10,000 steps every day. Start with 2,000 to 4,000 steps at a brisk pace.
✅ Wear a pedometer or other activity tracking device to count your steps and activities. This will help keep you motivated.
✅ Start an activity club at work or school. Ideas include walking, running, yoga, cycling or strength training.
✅ Walk, rollerblade or cycle to work or school – or part of the way.
✅ Stretch throughout the day. This can relieve tension when you have to sit for long periods of time.
✅ Make playtime with your kids physical for everyone. Instead of watching them play, join them in a game of tag or soccer.
✅ Go to the park with a group of friends and a Frisbee. Invite the neighbours and their kids over to play ball hockey, cricket or basketball.
✅ Walk to a co‐worker’s office to discuss an issue instead of phoning or sending an email.
Find out more about the Dry Feb challenge.
This article has been republished with permission from the Canadian Cancer Society's website.
Dry Feb is a fundraising campaign aimed at challenging social drinkers to change their habits for a month and make some healthy lifestyle changes. We would encourage people to drink responsibly and stick to the recommended daily guidelines for the rest of the year. We advise heavy drinkers or people dependent on alcohol to speak with their doctor before signing up to Dry Feb.