Saturday, 31 July 2021

How to get Fit for Life and do it for Free.

 

Fit for Life

The fitness industry is ever evolving. With new ideas and techniques to help you keep fit and healthy. New ways to approach your needs or perhaps a complete body and mind transformation......it is all pretty overwhelming, even for me and I have been within the fitness industry for many years. The more information there is out there, the more confusing it all becomes. Not sure what to do? Let me help and guide you through a fitness routine that you can stick with for a lifetime. It is not complicated nor is it time consuming ....... but most of all health and fitness should be enjoyable and suitable for your own unique lifestyle.

So firstly let's go back to the basics. The 5 things that you should always include in any fitness routine:

  1. Warm up - Always start any exercise routine with a warm up. Warming up the muscles you are about to use will prevent injury. Warming up prior to exercise also raises the body temperature and increases blood flow to your muscles.
  2. Cardio - Cardio exercise is crucial for heart health. Cardio exercise also speeds up your metabolism, burns calories, controls blood pressure and strengthens our immune systems
  3. Strength - Resistance exercise is good for bone health and can prevent brittle bone diseases such as osteoporosis and arthritis. Strength training will protect your joints from injury, helps with weight maintenance and will improve your muscle to fat ratio
  4. Flexibility - Improves your performance during everyday activities, decreases your risk of injury and helps your joints move through their full range of motion
  5. Cool Down - Cooling down allows for a gradual recovery from exercise by slowing down the heart rate and lowering blood pressure. 
Well that sounds like far too much for a start?? ...... I can almost hear you say that? Let's just break it down to a weekly routine and see how this works. 


The Government guidelines for cardio exercise:

"Each week, adults should accumulate at least 150 minutes (2 1/2 hours) of moderate intensity activity (such as brisk walking or cycling); or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity (such as running); or even shorter durations of very vigorous intensity activity (such as sprinting or stair climbing); or a combination of moderate, vigorous and very vigorous intensity activity."

The Government guidelines for strength exercise:

" Adults should do activities to develop or maintain strength in the major muscle groups. These could include heavy gardening, carrying heavy shopping, or resistance exercise. Muscle strengthening activities should be done at least two days a week, but any strengthening activity is better than none. "

With the above information to hand, we can break this down into time slots for the week:
  • 30 minutes of moderate/vigorous intensity cardio exercise 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday)
  • 20-30 minutes of resistance exercises twice a week (Tuesday and Thursday)
  • 10 minutes of yoga stretching 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday prior to bedtime for relaxation and a better nights sleep)

Cardio Exercise


This video is a low impact interval walking cardio workout. If you are a fair weather walker or prefer to exercise indoors, then this is ideal. The workout is just 25 minutes which includes a warm up and cool down.

Cardio exercise is any activity that gets your blood pumping, increases your heart rate and gets your large muscle groups working. This activity can be achieved in many ways and not just in the gym or by joining exercise groups. Some examples of cardiovascular activity are:
  • Walking
  • Swimming
  • Heavy cleaning
  • Gardening
  • Jogging
  • Running
  • Cycling
Choose your favourite cardio activity. By participating in 30 minutes of moderate/vigorous cardiovascular exercise, 3 times a week, will increase your cardio health, improve your immune system and burn calories to help you lose or maintain your weight

Strength Exercises


This video is 21 minutes in total (includes both warm up and cool down). If you have never been inside a gym or used weights before, then this video is a great introduction. All that is required for this workout are a set of light dumbbells (you can always use two small water bottles to begin with). The video guides you through each exercise with a modified version for beginners. This type of training is essential for bone and joint health. 

There is no need to do strength workouts more than twice a week. If you prefer to try different types of resistance training equipment have a go with resistance bands. If you enjoy this type of training and wish to do more than the minimum, then it is best to workout every other day, leaving a day between each session for your muscles to rest and repair.

Flexibility Exercises

This video will introduce you to Hatha yoga, a very gentle and relaxing yoga, ideal to practice before bedtime. Yoga encourages flexibility and the practice of breathing. Yoga promotes full range of movement which helps us in our everyday activities and prevents injury. 

Regular yoga practice creates mental clarity and calmness, increases body awareness, relieves chronic stress patterns, relaxes the mind and sharpens concentration and focus.

Nutrition


To be truly fit and healthy we need to think about what we eat. For a healthy balanced diet the National Food and Nutritional guidelines advise of 8 healthy guidelines to support the "eatwell plate"
  1. Base your meals on starchy carbohydrates (Bread, cereal, pasta, rice)
  2. Eat lots of fruit and vegetables
  3. Eat more fish
  4. Cut down on saturated fats and sugar
  5. Eat less salt - no more than 6g per day
  6. Get active and try to maintain a healthy weight
  7. Drink plenty of water (6 - 8) glasses a day
  8. Don't skip breakfast.


To help you understand weight management and a healthy diet, I have written an article on weight loss and weight management and food and optimum health. I have also written an ebook with a whole section on nutrition and health. There is a food planner, links, pdfs and diet plans to help you even further Free Ebook for you

Challenge yourself to a 'Fit for Life' campaign


Challenge yourself by implementing a few activities into your day. Make a plan and stick to it for a set time (e.g. 4 weeks). You can alter, amend or add to this plan after the 4 weeks, but the challenge will be to stay with your plan for the initial 4 weeks.. The plan does not have to be complicated (see example below):
  • 30 minutes of moderate/vigorous intensity cardio exercise 3 times a weeks (Monday, Wednesday and Friday)
  • 20-30 minutes of resistance exercises twice a week (Tuesday and Thursday)
  • 10 minutes of yoga stretching 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday prior to bedtime for relaxation and a better nights sleep)
Make a few adjustments to your eating plan perhaps by eating more fibre or choosing a diet that is right for you

There are plenty of exercise videos to choose from that are free and varied. This will keep you interested and challenged to continue your 'fit for life' campaign.




©HealthyForeverFitnessMotivation

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How to get Fit for Life and do it for Free.

  Fit for Life The fitness industry is ever evolving. With new ideas and techniques to help you keep fit and healthy . New ways to approa...