How to fool your way to a healthier Lifestyle
Exercise stinks. If you’re the type of person who cringes at the thought of running on a treadmill and lifting weights, then you’re officially a workout wimp. Workout wimps believe there are better ways to spend time than by sweating it out in a gym. But workout wimps are also more prone to health issues in the long run.
So how do we work out without working out? Simple — by fooling ourselves into taking up routine but fun activities! Here are some things we can do in place of hitting the gym:
Take up sports
Do you follow a favourite team in any sport? Be it basketball, football, tennis or boxing, you can step into the shoes of your favourite sports idol and take up what they are doing. By actively taking up sports, you’ll be engaging in physical exercise while feeling closer to your favourite sports superstar.
If you find any sport too hard to take up, try easier alternatives. For example, instead of tennis try badminton or table tennis. Instead of boxing, take up martial arts. You will even learn self-defence in the process.
Yoga is an ancient discipline that focuses on physical and mental well-being. This means it is a type of meditative exercise with none of the pressures, tension and self-consciousness that’s associated with working out in gyms. A specific branch of yoga, the hatha yoga, involves a lot of physical movement that can be likened to low-impact physical exercise. Yoga will help you be in touch with your body and may even help treat lower back pains usually associated with inactive lifestyle.
Play a children’s game
Hula hoops, jump ropes, Twister… all these are known children’s games. But these can also be used as an alternative to the gym. Children’s games are not to be belittled as they can still make you break a sweat, especially if you’re doing it for a long time. These games help improve our flexibility and coordination. The best part is that you can buy the props needed at a very low price from shops.
Do you find yourself tapping your shoes to the beat of music? Then perhaps dancing is in your calling. Take up simple dance-exercises like aerobics and Zumba. Aerobics and Zumba use choreographed movements that specifically target certain muscles and parts of the body, conditioning and toning them. If you want to take up complicated dances like hip hop, ballroom dances and belly dancing, they can be learned through consistent training with in classes. There are also plenty of dance genres to try, making it fun to find one that fits your condition and your taste.
Walk the dog
Dogs can also help you leave your couch and get you outdoors. Walking may be a simple activity, but it can significantly improve your heart’s condition, bone health and lowers your risk of getting illnesses. To make a dog walk more enjoyable, choose locations with picturesque views or play fetch with your pets.
Those who aren’t keen on staying outdoors can choose indoor venues. Window shopping is one such indoor activity where walking takes a primary role in exercise. What’s great about window shopping is that you get to see and try out clothes, shoes and items you’ve always wanted to have and get a great exercise in the process. People who love to window shop will not realise that they have already taken up an hour or two of exercise because of the joy in the activity.
Like walking, riding your bike can also give health benefits if done consistently and progressively. Cycling involves the muscles of the legs and conditions the heart. The fun side about cycling is that you can explore your city and the outskirts of town. You can also take your bike to new, unexplored paths where you may find unique adventures and experiences.
We all know that exercise keeps us healthy physically and that we need it in our lives. Yet, we still choose not to pick it up because it is difficult to sustain. By looking at alternatives and developing these into consistent routines, we can still get the benefits of exercise while having fun in the process.
Do you know of other activities that can double as exercise? What words of wisdom or advice can you give to those who find it difficult to work out? Share your thoughts by commenting below!