Exercise is an important part of any weight loss program and key to simply staying healthy. And you don’t need to go to pricey gyms and trainers or endure long brutal workouts to benefit. It can be as easy as committing to move your body more (even if it’s a little) every day.
How Much Exercise Should I be Getting?
Moving more increases muscle mass, which helps you burn more calories at rest. Believe it or not, we start to lose muscle mass at age 30. And with adult responsibilities – i.e. job, kids, commute, etc. it can be difficult to carve out time for a workout. That’s why it’s important to find other ways to stay active and maintain or increase lean muscle mass as an adult.
In the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, people are encouraged to sit less and participate in moderate to vigorous physical activity every week. To reap substantial health benefits, it is suggested that adults participate in at least 35 minutes of moderate intensity activity a day. This may seem hard to achieve, but there are easy ways to incorporate this into to your daily routine.
Easy Exercise Routines That Don’t Require a Gym
Life can get busy, we get it. And often schedules involve juggling so many other responsibilities that exercise takes a backseat. But, there are ways to still fit exercise in.
Here are a few tips to incorporate daily workout routines into your schedule:
- Walk the stairs instead of taking elevators, taking stairs burns 7x more calories than taking an elevator and helps build muscle. Average American flight of stairs have about 13 steps per flight and for every 13 steps, you can burn 5-7 calories
- If you sit during the day, take a break every hour or so and walk around your office. Or if the weather permits, take a walk outside. This will help combat the negative effects of sitting too long, which include an increased risk of heart disease, obesity, and cancer.
- Before you start your day, do a few exercises. A few sit ups or jumping jacks each time can really add up at the end of the week.
- When you’re doing chores like gardening, vacuuming or washing the dishes, listen to music, which will get you moving a little more.
- If you’re dieting, you already know the importance of staying hydrated. Combine this with a little exercise by filling your water bottle halfway, which will require a stroll over to your office water cooler or kitchen many times a day.
- Keep a pair of light dumbbells in a desk drawer and periodically do a few exercises throughout the day, in addition to standing up and stretching.
- To combat being sedentary when you’re watching your favorite show, do a few exercises during the breaks. Even better, skip your show and commit to an evening walk.
Research shows 90% of people who lose significant weight and keep it off exercise every day. If you’ve been sedentary for a long time, fitting in exercise may feel difficult in the beginning, but it is well worth it.
Dr. Amy Lee, M.D.
Chief Medical Officer, Lindora Clinic