Summer’s here and the Olympics are just around the corner - what more inspiration do you need to start your journey to good heart health?
So what’s stopping you? Here are some tips for tackling those common ‘excuses’ that stop us from taking that all important heart healthy exercise:
Time - We all live busy lifestyles but shouldn’t have to sacrifice our health. Getting up slightly earlier, making use of your lunch break or switching off the TV can free up loads of time to be active. Remember, two blocks of 15 minutes are just as beneficial as one 30 minute stint.
Expense - You don’t need the gym to get fit; there are plenty of free activities like walking the dog, taking the stairs, pushing the pram on a brisk walk or going for a jog. For the fraction of the cost of a gym membership, invest in a skipping rope, a football or a tennis racket and get in the back garden or your local park. Take advantage of the lighter evenings and be active outdoors for free.
Boredom - Doing the same routine over and over will become repetitive and you’ll soon lose interest. Keep things fresh by mixing up your routine, increasing the intensity or taking up a new activity. Better still, meet up with friends or join a dance class instead of exercising alone to spur each other on.
Fatigue - Regular exercise will help to boost energy levels by improving the efficiency of your heart and shifting excess weight, making you feel more alert and less tired from having to lug those extra pounds around with you.
Injury - Look at low impact options such as swimming, cycling or rowing to keep you fit while your injury heals. You could also speak to your doctor or physio about the best alternatives for you.
Exercising needn’t be a chore; it can be fun and part of your daily routine. Remember, getting slightly out of breath for half an hour a day will help to maintain a healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of coronary heart disease.
So stop the excuses and bring out the champion in you.
For more information about healthy living take a look at Heart Research UK's website.