If you’re struggling to find ways to add more activity into your daily routine, you’re not alone. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) found that 80 percent of kids and adults in the U.S. don’t get enough exercise every day.
Today’s modern lifestyle often makes it difficult to get enough activity, especially for people working at office jobs. Even if you’re able to hit the gym every day, you’re still spending most of your time sitting—in your car, at your desk, at home on the couch, then in bed before getting up to do it all over again.
Human bodies weren’t made to spend hours on end in a seated position. We’re designed to be on the move! If you’re feeling stuck, the Shapa team is here to help with 10 easy things you can do to be more active every day.
10 Easy Ways to be More Active Throughout the Day
Whether you want to lose weight, lower your blood pressure, or just feel healthier all around, committing to moving more is a great first step. Try these easy ways to sneak more exercise into your day.
1. Set a reminder
It’s easy to get lost in your work. You can spend what feels like a few minutes at your desk, then suddenly two hours have gone by, and you haven’t gotten up once from your chair.
Set a reminder on your phone, watch, or computer to get up and move for five minutes every hour. Stretch, take a short walk, go up and down the stairs a few times, or do anything else that feels good and gets your heart pumping. You’ll come back to your desk feeling focused and refreshed, plus you’ll have burnt a few extra calories.
2. Go for a walk
Going on a short walk every day can help you become more focused, fight fatigue, and lose weight. Check out our article from 99 Walks to learn more about the amazing benefits of daily walking.
3. Multitask as you binge-watch
Being more active doesn’t have to mean sacrificing your favorite TV shows. Instead, do some exercises as you binge. Some moves that will let you stay focused on your TV include squats, lunches, marching in place, walking on the treadmill, lifting weights, and kettlebell swings. Just a few extra minutes of activity before you plop on the couch at night can make a huge difference.
4. Stretch at night
Stretching increases blood flow to your whole body, which can ease tension and help you sleep better. Regular stretching can also improve your posture, which can prevent injuries.
5. Think fast
People often think they need to log hours at the gym to benefit from exercise, but that’s not true! All you need is four intense minutes using the Tabata method. This technique requires you to work at an all-out intensity for 20 seconds. Then, you take a break for 10 seconds before moving on to the next move. Repeat this cycle for a total of four minutes.
Combine moves like squat jumps, burpees, high knees, jump rope, jumping jacks, pushups, and mountain climbers. Switch it up every day for a new, fast workout that builds muscle and torches calories. With the Shapa app, you might even see short workouts like this pop up in your personalized missions! Tackle them knowing you’re doing something good for your mind, heart, and body.
6. Take your meetings to-go
Instead of sitting in a stuffy conference room for your next one-on-one meeting, suggest taking a walk outside. You can still have a conversation, but you’ll both feel better after getting some fresh air and exercise. You can also use this idea when you’re on calls that don’t require you to be at your computer.
7. Squat and clean
You’re already bending down to do the dishes, put laundry in the dryer, and pick stuff up off the floor. Instead of bending over from your back, squat! This power move is incredibly effective in burning calories, plus it will help you become more limber. Squats strengthen your legs, hips, and back, making them the perfect move for all-over body conditioning. Learn how to perfect your squat, then add a few to your daily tasks.
8. Take the stairs
You’ve probably heard this advice before but taking the stairs instead of the elevator is a great way to elevate your heart rate and burn some calories! On average, people burn 5 – 10 calories for each flight of stairs they climb.
Even more importantly, stair climbing builds strength in your legs and gets your blood circulating. Start with replacing the elevator with stairs for just one flight a day, then work up to only using the stairs for maximum benefits.
9. Park farther away
When you venture outside of your home or office, park far away from your destination. This forces you to sneak in some extra walking without taking up too much of your time. Also, if you’re carrying groceries, you’ll get an additional boost of strength training on your way back to your car.
10. Turn up the volume and dance
Have some fun as you move your body. The next time your favorite song comes on, turn up the volume and throw an impromptu dance party! You’ll get a rush of mood-boosting endorphins, plus you’ll break a little sweat and burn some calories.
Use Shapa to Get Healthier
At Shapa, we want to help you reach your goals of living a healthier lifestyle, whatever that means for you. Taking small steps every day can add up to a significant impact on your overall health.
Try to incorporate just one of the above 10 ideas into your life this week. Then, add a new one every few days until you’re spending more of your day moving and less time sitting in one place. As you start to gradually increase the amount of exercise you get in a day, you’ll notice a positive difference in how you feel inside and out.