Q: How was your day, Dr ketch? I am not enjoying my exercise. What can I do to feel deep enjoyment and having fun when I exercise. Please, what should be my aim/goal of exercise? Thank you.
A: I can certainly empathize with you 😀 Sometimes, the things that are good for us are not necessarily fun to do, right? 😉 But the truth is since exercise ought to be a part of our daily lives, we should make it fun and include activities we like.
There are several reasons why you should exercise. The first is that it makes your heart stronger and builds your muscles. It certainly helps you lose weight and feel good about yourself….which appears not to be happening in your case 😀 But really, exercise causes the release of happy brain chemicals that make you feel good! It reduces your risk of high blood pressure, increases the density of your bones, improves flexibility etc. So, even if you don’t have a gram of extra weight, exercise or physical activity is still a great idea!
If you like going to the gym, that’s great. Start with warm up exercise. Get your workout and try to do a mixture of cardio/aerobics (like using the treadmill), strength training (like using dumb bells) and then abdominal exercises, as desired. The fitness instructor in the gym should be able to help you with specific advice tailored to your needs. Remember not to start any rigorous exercise regimen without talking to your doctor about it. If you haven’t exercised in a while, start small (eg 10 minutes per day) and then scale up. For the enjoyment part of this 😀 an MP3 player in your ears is a fun way of listening to your favourite music while losing the flab 😉
Now, the above is the regular way but a lot of people do not have access to a gym. Here are other ways of getting your exercise…and hopefully, having fun too:
If you like dancing, then go for it. That’s a fun way of shedding some calories. You can register for a professional dance class (perhaps with your partner which is a good way of binding with him/her) or just do your thing at home. Just slot in a CD/DVD and dig it out alone or with your family 😀
When getting ready for work in the mornings, dance along to your favourite tune as you go through the motions. You can also do this when you get home or whenever you’re home and watching TV. During the commercial break, get up and dance or do some aerobic jumps. You’ll be surprised how many calories you can lose this way.
Remember arm wrestling? Get as many people as you can to join you in doing this. If you’ve got children, they’ll love to do this with you. Who’s going down???
Over the weekend, as much as you can, arrange a time-out with friends or family where soccer or lawn tennis or volley ball, walking, jogging, biking (if you live in Nigeria, this refers to riding a bicycle as opposed to using a motor bike :D), hiking or any other sport you all enjoy is on the menu. This creates an opportunity to hang out and catch up with each other’s news.
Then try using the stairs instead of the elevators. Get up to go pick up documents sent to the printer instead of calling for it. While sitting down, intermittently, clench and release your butt muscles, flex and extend your arms and legs, flex and extend your neck etc. This way, you’re getting your exercise without even really being aware of it.
In the office, you can arrange to have a walking meeting with colleagues with the advantage that you kill two birds with one stone: get your exercise and get your work done J
When going back home, if you use public transportation, stop at least one or two bus stops away from your house and walk the rest of the way. If you’ve got a driver/chauffeur, let him drop you off, a little distance away and then you can walk. However, be sure that your environment is safe before deciding on this.
Other activities like house cleaning (that’s right…cleaning :D), video games that make you work out or dance and generally playing with children can give you a massive work out and you’ll be laughing all the way through…okay, except for the house work bit, right? 😉
If you can get an exercise buddy, that’s great as this person keeps you accountable for your exercise regimen and you also keep him/her accountable.
Try and get a pedometer. This counts the number of steps you make in a day and hopefully, gets you to do the optimal. Remember that you should get at least 150 minutes of physical activity weekly. Split these minutes up and get as much as you can daily. Please don’t try to get it all over the weekend. That might be too much for your heart to deal with. For more on walking, target heart rate and the pedometer, please click on the link below:
Remember that exercise yields the best dividends when combined with a healthy eating regimen. Burning off 500 calories in the gym and then heading straight to take a burger that is about 600 calories, just means that you wasted time in the gym as no actual work was done!
I hope this helps 😀
Have a great evening y’all and please drop a line to let me know what other fun ways you use to get your physical activity daily.
Have a great week ahead, guys 😀
Here’s to a healthier you!