It’s the new year. Everyone is back from summer holidays. Kids are back in school. Now is the time to put some of those good intentions to work by getting more active!
Getting active has many benefits but let's focus on the most important consideration – your cardiovascular (CV) health. How well your heart and lungs function is a critical factor in your overall health, wellbeing, and quality of life. Improvements in CV health will lead to a reduction in blood pressure, better controlled blood sugar and cholesterol levels, improved sleep quality, reduced body weight and a strengthened immune system.
So, what is cardiovascular fitness? Simply put, it is any activity that increases your heart and breathing rates whilst using large groups of muscles. The most common examples are walking, jogging, cycling, and swimming. The benefits of these types of exercise can occur with as little as 1 hour of moderate activity a week! A recent analysis showed as little as 15 minutes a day added on average 3 years to a person’s life. So, it really doesn’t take much to get some significant benefit. The best way to achieve this activity boost is to try and make it part of your routine. That way you are more likely to make it happen, and it just becomes part of your lifestyle.
You can try:
- parking a little further away from your workplace
- getting off the bus one stop early
- skip the lifts and take the stairs
- make a short walk part of your lunch break
- dust off the bike and explore your neighbourhood
- walk…or jog with the dog!
- hit the pool, and churn out a few laps.