Americans are facing a crisis of activity. Or, more accurately, a crisis of lack of activity. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, only one in three American adults get the recommended amount of physical activity each week. Only five percent of Americans perform 30 minutes of physical activity each day. Why is an active lifestyle important? Simple. An active lifestyle protects you against lifestyle diseases. It will improve your strength and mobility. Most importantly, it will allow you to live a better and healthier life.
If you are ready to boost your daily activity and learn how to maintain an active lifestyle, here are ten simple tips you need to know.
Tip 1 – Change Your Mindset
From this day forth, you are an active person. You are not someone who performs activities. No, you are an active person, meaning you seek out and integrate activity into your life. This is an important shift in your perspective. Learning how to be more active starts by seeing yourself as an active person and inviting activities into your life.
Tip 2 – Start Small
You don’t have to run a marathon today or tomorrow or even next month. Lifestyle change is hard. Start with shifts to your daily routine that are small, easy, and achievable, especially if you were mostly sedentary before. If that means walking for five minutes at a time, that’s a great place to start.
Tip 3 – Add Walking to Your Life
One of the simplest ways to add more activity into your life is just to walk more. Find ways to add more steps into your day naturally. That could mean taking a walk in the morning before you start your day or taking short breaks during the day to walk a circuit around the block or the office. A great way to add steps to your day is to park at the back of a parking lot when you’re running errands. There are plenty of apps that you can download on your smartphone to count your steps.
Tip 4 – Take the Stairs
From now on, unless you are moments away from missing your flight at the airport, you will take the stairs, not the elevator. Yes, every time. If you work in a big office building, then consider yourself lucky that your work gives you the opportunity to add fitness into your life.
Tip 5 – Make Time for Fitness
One of the most common excuses people make for not working out is that they don’t have time. Yet, research shows that the average American adult spends four and a half hours watching television. If you don’t watch TV, then think about how much time you spend on your phone scrolling through social media or playing video games. Take just a portion of this time and commit it to fitness.
Tip 6 – Schedule Your Workouts
Now that you’ve built in a little walking and stair climbing into your day, it’s time to up the ante. With the extra time you peeled away from your social media habit, begin scheduling workouts each week. Focus on building the habit of working out into your life. This helps if you work out on the same days and at the same times each week so that it becomes part of your routine. Remember to start small. Even just doing 15-minute workouts three days a week is a great start!
Tip 7 – Find Fitness That You Like
No, you don’t have to slog it out on a treadmill at the gym every day to be fit. In fact, if you don’t enjoy the activity you’ve chosen, you’ll never stick with it. If you’re new to fitness, experiment. Try different cardio machines at the gym, use different resistance machines, and ask the gym staff to guide you on the free weights. Figure out what you like and what will keep you coming back. Another great option is to try lots of different group fitness classes. Experiment with different fitness modalities and find your fitness passion.
Tip 8 – Sign Up for an Event
What is the one thing all of your super fit friends have in common? In all likelihood, they seem to be training for a race, competition, or event at all times. There’s a reason. Signing up for an event is an excellent way to keep you motivated as you transition into an active lifestyle. Pick an event that pushes you a little outside your comfort zone but is doable with training. Maybe you can sign up for a local 5k race or join your work’s softball team. If you don’t like the idea of competition, how about signing up for a charity bike ride or run? Now you can get fit and help a worthy cause at the same time.
Tip 9 – Invite Your Friends and Family to Join You
It’s always easier to live an active lifestyle if you spend time with other active people. Invite your closest friends and family members to join you on your fitness journey. Go on hikes with the family. Bring your best friend to the gym. Go for a run with your neighbors. If you aren’t getting as much support at home as you’d like, consider joining a local fitness group. This could be a tennis club or running group. Anything active goes. There’s no time like the present to add new active friends to your life.
Tip 10 – Focus on Your Nutrition
The food you eat will fuel your body. It can either propel you as you add fitness into your life or hold you back. A big part of being active is to eat nourishing foods that will support your new lifestyle. Focus on lean proteins, whole grains, and lots of veggies. Cut out sugary drinks, carby foods, and processed meals on most days.
Bonus Tip – Hire a Personal Trainer
Maintaining your motivation to get fit in the beginning of your lifestyle transition can be a challenge, especially if you’ve never exercised much in the past. In this case, sometimes it helps to bring on an expert. A personal trainer will help you define your fitness goals and develop a customized fitness plan for you. Perhaps most powerful of all, a personal trainer will hold you accountable, while also teaching you how to live an active life and dial in your nutrition outside of training sessions.
There’s no time like the present to learn how to maintain an active lifestyle. Change your mindset and then start with small actions, like adding more walking into your days and taking the stairs whenever you can. Find time to work out and then schedule your fitness activities to create a fitness routine. Experiment and discover the forms of fitness you enjoy doing. Next, increase the challenge by signing up for an event that will force you to train. You don’t have to do it alone. Bring your friends and family on board and make sure you are eating right for your new lifestyle. How to be more active isn’t an impossible puzzle. It starts with your decision to change your life. EōS Fitness can help. Find the nearest gym or try EōS workouts at home.