Moderate cardiovascular exercise such as walking, flowing yoga or dancing is proven to prime our immune systems. Just 30 minutes a day of movement that increases your heart rate has been shown to reduce the risk of catching a cold – so even though the temperatures have dropped don’t miss out, GET A MOVE ON. (If you’re a member of my Online do-yoga! Class watch out for a 3 minute Down Dog Boogie routine that will get you going this weekend.)
And that’s not all. Movement also has a positive effect on our mood and mental outlook. It literally makes us happy! The more you move, the more energetic and upbeat you feel and so you want to move some more. Dancing is a fab way to move about – why not put on some music and have a little kitchen boogie?
The key thing is to make moving about more of a habit and sitting about less of a habit. This is particularly difficult during lockdown and if you have any restrictions (problems with joint mobility for example). Here are some examples of how you might include more movement in your day to day life – they may sound a bit silly, but if you make the little things habits, the extra steps it will make a big difference.
- When driving, find a convenient parking spot that is a 10-minute walk from your destination
- If you can make a journey on foot – try it, it may be more enjoyable than you thought
- If you have an upstairs, use the loo upstairs when you need to go
- If you do a daily walk, try going further or time yourself and try to beat your time each day
- Put a bird feeder at the end of your garden and make sure to check it daily
As I say some things sound a bit daft, but we are all creatures of habit. We visit the same places week in week out, do the same activities day in day out, and if we make some slight adjustments we will be able to squeeze in a little more movement and feel the benefits.