Keeping fit post-lockdown: Be Fit As a Fiddle and Full of Beans is by our regular contributor Sarah-Jane Ellis.
There was a dramatic change in the way we exercised in 2020. Gyms closed, personal trainers resorted to Zoom and online exercise classes became more popular than ever.
The importance of our physical and mental well-being became even more apparent with the Covid pandemic and multiple lockdowns. The vaccine brings light at the end of the tunnel, but the need for us to stay fit and healthy is still very real.
Were you sitting in your living room last year watching the rest of the British public run, walk and hike those lockdown pounds off? Yes? Don’t worry, we’ve compiled six easy tips to get you motivated, fit, and feeling better. They are all free and most will get you outdoor for some essential vitamin D!
A Brisk Walk
Incredibly effective and NHS recommended as part of a healthy lifestyle. Walk briskly (at about three miles an hour) to improve heart health, stamina and burn excess calories. Even a brisk 10-minute walk can contribute to your recommended 150 minutes of weekly exercise. Start with shorter walks, then build your stamina to include walks to work and longer walks and hikes.
Grab a pair of comfortable trainers and start gently, gradually increasing the pace and distance. A fitness watch can help track your progress, but isn’t essential. Try running with a buddy, to music, a podcast or an audiobook.
High-intensity interval training burns more calories than most cardio workouts and the intense exertion puts your body into hyperdrive, burning more fat and toning muscles. HIIT exercises are simple to follow and suitable for all abilities with lots of beginner exercise classes online. Check out The Body Coach on YouTube for beginner, intermediate and savage (only for the brave!) workouts.
We hope you’re enjoying reading about keeping fit post-lockdown. For more of our Well-Being/Lifestyle articles, please click here.
Do you want to get fit and healthy, but lack motivation? Virtual challenges like Couch to 5k are fantastic for getting you off that sofa and keeping you accountable. Simply ask friends and family to donate to a charitable cause to spur you on.
Ever tried to exercise after having that leftover slice of pizza for breakfast? It’s grim! Replacing sugary, fatty, processed foods with fresh food like fruit, vegetables and lean/plant proteins will make it easier for you to exercise, keep you fuller for longer and have massive health benefits.
A tired person is less likely to eat healthily, exercise or make good decisions. A consistent seven-to-eight hours of sleep per night will improve your overall health and fitness levels, leaving you energised and ready for the day ahead. Put down the phone, turn the TV off and get a good night’s sleep.
Healthy eating, good sleep and regular exercise all contribute to better health. But please remember; your journey is a marathon, not a sprint. Start slowly and gradually challenge yourself to learn to replace those bad habits with positive, lifelong habits.
Always warm up and cool down before and after exercise and always consult a doctor before beginning any new exercise regime or diet if you have any health concerns.
You can read more of Sarah’s articles at sarah-jane-ellis.medium.com or anjuskitchen.co.uk
We hope you enjoyed reading about keeping fit post-lockdown. For more of our Well-Being/Lifestyle articles, please click here.
Main photo by Bruno Nascimento on Unsplash.