Looking to turn over a new leaf, or maybe just want to save some time on your exercise schedule? Most of us want to improve our fitness even some little bit, but many find it hard to squeeze in the time needed for a body transformation or for hitting the road for a jog. We’ve put together some scientifically backed tips for saving time and adding to your health for the new year ahead.
1 – No time for gym, or live so far from one it isn’t practical to travel in and out? Use your own weight for resistance instead. Bodyweight Exercises involve using your own mass as resistance in a workout. They’re convenient because they require no equipment and can be done almost anywhere. They’re also terrific at building your body’s foundation and can be easily tailored to your personal needs based on the exercise and number of repetitions. Bodyweight exercises are among the most underrated ways to get a workout in.
2 – Turn off the tv or step away from your computer screen while eating. Watching tv and movies on your computer or on the couch in front of the telly while eating is associated with overeating and poorer food choices. You’ll also be bombarded by ads for pizza and snacks during the break which does’t help when you go to the fridge to decide what you want! Step away and focus on your meal so you can make a conscious choice to be healthier.
3 – Music is your friend. Sticking on the ipod isn’t just a way to keep distractions out while you walk or run, but a workout playlist can be hugely beneficial. The most important aspects of a workout playlist are the tempo and “rhythm response,” or how much a song makes you want to move. Runners tend to prefer music that’s about 160 beats per minute, but the motivational effects seem to level out at 145 beats per minute. A simple google search will give you a list of effective workout songs that fit the bill.
4 – No time for gym after work, or feeling tired even after you’ve been sitting at a desk all day? Get off your ass in the office. Seriously! A simple thing like standing for a few minutes every hour or two will relieve poor posture, chronic back pain and decrease the risk of obesity that’s associated with sitting all day. Walk around the office, go outside for five minutes and while everyone else is on their smoke break, walk to the shop and get a bottle of water. You’ll be amazed how refreshing it feels to get some clean air in your system regularly throughout the day if you’re used to an office environment.
5 – Don’t drink calories. While many of us make a conscious effort to avoid junk food and start to eat a little healthier at this time of year, all that good work is ruined by the simple act of going to the can machine. Minerals, milk, alcohol and even juices are all sure fire ways of putting back on weight you worked hard to shake off. Studies are showing too that drinks marketed as sugar free or zero calories can still be bad for the diet because they are sweetened in other ways. Water and plenty of it is the way to go.
6 – Join a class. It may sound like a simple idea but there’s a reason classes get results that you as an individual might have been struggling for. A class means meeting others with the same goals as you, which means support when you’re starting a new routine. It’s all too easy to give up on your own if you don’t see results but joining yoga, spinning or zumba will open the door to some motivation and advice from instructors and others in the same boat as yourself.
7 – Finally, hit the shower before bed. A warm shower before bedtime can lower body temperature, which slows down metabolic functions such as heart rate, breathing, and digestion. It can even help your sleep patterns and its a great way to switch off from your phone or tv before you sleep, ensuring a more refreshed and healthier you.
Try some of these simple steps to improving your overall health and if you have any ideas or tips that work for you, be sure to let us know in the comments!!
(Images and source – Bufferapp, Health science, Pinterest, Buzzfeed, Popsugar)