9 Effortless Things That Will Help You Get Fit
For most people, staying in shape is not easy.
I'm not going to sit here and claim there's some miraculous technique. We're all different after-all, and thus have different interpretations of the word fitness. For the sake of understanding today's post, I'm providing a general definition. Let's define someone who is "fit" or "in-shape" as healthy, active, and able to perform tasks without tiring out quickly.
For me, spending hours at the gym is unrealistic and tiring. Instead, I prefer to incorporate movement into my everyday life so that I can keep my body healthy and strong. The best part? It doesn't feel like work! It doesn't even require effort. These habits have become such a regular part of my lifestyle that I no longer have to remind myself to do them. My hope is that you can take any of the tips I mention, and implement them as habits in your everyday life.
1. take the stairs
The simplest way to add movement into your day is to utilize steps. Of course, you're not expected to walk up 8 flights, but if you see a reasonable opportunity, take advantage of it. Eventually, it will become second nature. Ps. This includes escalators!
2. meet up with friends
Instead of a lunch date, try hanging with friends in an active environment. Grab a coffee & go for a long walk, or bring your yoga mats to the park to have a talk & stretch session. Same old activities get boring, so try to brainstorm new ways to get fit with friends.
3. clean up
Wanna know what's so underrated? The fact that cleaning is a legitimate workout. Take 1-2 days out of the week to clean, put away clothes, and do any other household chores you need to do. Don't forget to put on your workout clothes & blast some music- 2 cleaning essentials for me.
4. pick up a new hobby (dance, gymnastics)
Hobbies might seem immature to some people, but I think everyone should have at least one. Aside from being fun, hobbies are extremely beneficial for your health. Simply choose anything (preferably including physical movement) that you could see yourself enjoying. Take a dance class, learn self-defense, or participate in your local recreational sports league.
5. tense your muscles while seated
This one definitely sounds weird, but it's actually pretty cool! While your reading this, pick a part of your body (butt, legs, hands) and try tensing them. Simply squeeze or contract, hold for a few, then release. Doing this throughout the day can help you burn calories, strengthen your muscles, and release tension & stress. [click here for more tensing exercises]
6. practice good posture
Good posture is so important for so many different reasons. It is beneficial for your appearance (how you hold yourself) as well as your bones and joints. The best way to practice posture while sitting is to keep your back and thighs at a 90 degree angle. Try to always keep your feet aligned, shoulders back, and head up.
7. take walks around the office or stand while working
Standing while working isn't always ideal, however, the perfect excuse to get up and move is a phone call. Pick a private space where you can pace back and forth, or step outside if you can. It's also helpful to get up every hour to take a bathroom break, go for a short walk, or just stand up and stretch. [learn more about improving your posture]
8. wear workout clothes to daily errands
My workout clothes are my favorite excuse to be comfortable while running errands. The added benefit is that they give you the ability to also stay active all day long. Dressing up is essential at times, but it can restrict your movement and make you feel inclined to move less. By wearing workout attire, you won't be afraid to sweat, and it might even motivate you to go for a run when you get home!
9. Park farther away
When you go to the grocery store, I'm sure your first instinct is to park as close as you can do the door. Instead of waiting for the car in front of you to pull out, drive to the back of the lot and take a little walk. Of course, in certain weather conditions this is not ideal, but when it's a nice day, remind yourself to take advantage of it.
Implementing habits does not happen overnight. However, the key to success is setting yourself reminders for as long as you need. You can make them your phone background, or even place sticky notes on common spots like your desk or wallet. Keep in mind, the more consistent you are over time, the less effort it takes.