What are you doing to boost your health and fitness levels? According to government advice, adults need to be aiming for 75 minutes of vigorous activity or 150 minutes of moderate activity per week to stay healthy.
The problem is, our modern lifestyles are far more sedentary than they used to be thanks to all the technology, gadgets and machines we have to help make things easier.
What can you do to boost your health and fitness?
For most people, the easiest way to get moving is to make activity part of everyday life, like walking or cycling instead of using the car to get around. One way to do your recommended 150 minutes of weekly physical activity is to do 30 minutes, 5 days a week. Those 30 minutes don’t all have to be in one ‘block’ if you’re pushed for time – you can spread it over the course of your day.
However, if you can do more, or take part in a mix of moderate and vigorous aerobic activity every week, this will boost your health and fitness levels.
Moderate aerobic activity
Moderate activity will raise your heart rate and make you breathe faster and feel warmer. You can tell if you’re working at a moderate intensity if you can still talk but you can’t sing the words to a song. Activities that require moderate effort include:
- walking fast
- water aerobics
- riding a bike on level ground
- pushing a lawn mower
Physical Activity Guidance: at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity such as cycling or fast walking every week, and strength exercises on two or more days a week that work all the major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).
Vigorous activity requires you to work harder. You can tell it’s vigorous activity when you’re breathing hard and fast. You won’t be able to say more than a few words without pausing for a breath. Activities that require vigorous effort include:
- jogging or running
- swimming fast
- riding a bike fast or on hills
- skipping rope
Physical Activity Guidance: at least 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity, such as running or a game of tennis every week, and strength exercises on two or more days a week that work all the major muscles (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders and arms).
What activities strengthen muscles?
There are many ways you can strengthen your muscles, whether it’s at home or in the gym. Examples of muscle-strengthening activities include:
- lifting weights
- working with resistance bands
- doing exercises that use your own body weight, such as push-ups and sit-ups
- heavy gardening, such as digging and shovelling
Muscle strength is necessary for all daily movement, building and maintaining strong bones, regulate blood sugar and blood pressure and to help maintain a healthy weight.
Muscle-strengthening exercises are counted in repetitions and sets. A repetition is one complete movement of an activity, like a bicep curl or a sit-up. A set is a group of repetitions.
For each strength exercise, try to do at least 8 to 12 repetitions in each set.
You should do them to the point where you struggle to complete another repetition.
Boost your Health and Fitness
Our experienced practitioners can help get you on the right track
Book a Corrective Exercise session to get your own personal activity plan and for more tips and advice… Call us on 0191 398 0000 or send us an email.