News flash: you don’t have to enjoy the gym to get into shape. In fact, if you don’t like the gym, chances are you don’t even have a membership, and if you’re not going to use it, then why pay for one in the first place?
Still, it is important to realize just how vital regular exercise is to your overall health. Refraining from regular exercise can lead to a host of physical health problems down the road, including:
Additionally, a lack of exercise has been linked to a higher risk of depression, proving that making time to “move” is essential for your mental health, too. Now, you may be saying, “I don’t have time to exercise,” or even telling yourself that you simply hate it. If this sounds like you, you’re in luck, because you don’t have to run marathons or lift big weights to get in your daily dose of exercise.
The Department of Health and Human Services recommends that the average American gets either 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity every week. What does this mean? It means you don’t have to strain your mind and your muscles every evening after work to live a healthy lifestyle. You just need to do more than watch television!
If you hate exercising but care about your health, try a few of these movements to get your body back to a healthy state.
Yes, walking counts as an exercise. When you walk, you are literally carrying your own bodyweight for whatever distance and time you decide to travel. This means that something as simple as walking can actually help build muscle and cardiovascular endurance, reduce fat, and strengthen your bones. Regular walking also increases your heart rate, which ensures better blood circulation and a decrease in future risk of stroke or heart disease.
Walking can be done anywhere at any time of the day. Try walking between 10-30 minutes daily before work, after work, or even on your lunch break.
Who hates squats? If you just let out an audible groan and raised your hand, here’s another question for you: Do you hate sitting? Because every time you sit, guess what you have to do?
Squats are the most functional exercise a person can do, and they are arguably the best exercise someone who hates working out can take part in. When you squat, try not to think of it as an exercise, but rather as the journey to sitting. The more of them you do, the more often you get to sit okay, this may seem like a stretch. Still, developing and practicing the squat (even if it is unweighted) will decrease your pain when both standing and sitting and significantly strengthen your legs. And the best part? You don’t even have to do that many to see results.
Not everyone has access to a pool, but if you do, take advantage! Swimming is classified by many as the perfect workout, and such a bold claim is not without reason. Soaking in water can help to ease the tension of your muscles while simultaneously relieving pressure off your joints. Even a movement as simple as treading water can make for an intense workout that doesn’t necessarily feel strenuous, making swimming a fantastic exercise that almost anyone, regardless of their level of fitness, can enjoy.
It doesn’t even feel like exercise – more like stretching and mental focusing – but yoga is a great way to unwind from a tiresome day while still building muscle and lengthening muscle tissues. Yoga classes usually range from 30 – 90 minutes long, giving participants a set block on their busy schedules they can work to plan around. And if you don’t have a membership to a gym or studio, you can find plenty of free yoga videos on YouTube that can be done in the comfort of your living room.
If for no other reason, give yoga a shot for the Savasana session at the end, which is basically nap time for adults!
Intense exercise is not for everyone, but that doesn’t give you an excuse not to get out there and move. There are plenty of ways you can exercise without necessarily working out, so do yourself a favor this year and make a resolution to strengthen your body, mind, and soul.
Please consult your physician before beginning any exercise routine.
Sinclair Broadcast Group is committed to the health and well-being of our viewers, which is why we initiated Sinclair Cares. Every month we’ll bring you information about the “Cause of the Month,” including topical information, education, awareness, and prevention. January is Shape Up U.S. Month.