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Exercise has HUGE benefits not just for our body, but for our mind and our mood too!
- Increase our energy levels
- Lower our stress levels
- Improve our strength and endurance
- Increase our confidence and self-esteem
- Make us feel happier
- Help us sleep better
- Help our brains function better
- Help us stay healthy and live for longer
It’s possible to enjoy physical activity just for fun, without worrying about doing enough, being competent or losing weight! Here’s how:
- Listen to your body. Your body will tell you when you need to be more or less active, what is enjoyable and what’s best for you.
- Mix it up. Don’t restrict yourself to just running and lifting weights. Hiking, dancing, paddle boarding, swimming, rock climbing, martial arts, Frisbee, rollerblading and biking all count as exercise!
- Make it social. Start a social sports team, play volleyball or touch on the weekend, or have an early morning walk or swim with a friend!
- Make your dog’s day every day. Take the dog for a walk if you have one – that way you are taking care of your pet and looking after your health at the same time too!
- Become babysitter extraordinaire. Take younger siblings and family or even the next door neighbours kids (ask first!) to the park and push them on the swings, play catch and throw a ball.
- Have indoor options. Rent or buy an exercise DVD or if you’re lucky enough to have a Wii or Xbox Kinect – they have heaps of active games and fitness options. You may feel silly at first but if it’s just you in your lounge, who cares?
- Get amongst the community. Check out your local community or church hall/centre. There are community Zumba, dance classes, running groups or boot camps!
- If you feel really uncomfortable (like dizzy, too hot, too cold or pain – stop. It’s your body’s way of letting you know that it’s had enough!
- If you have asthma or other breathing issues, check with your doctor before you head outdoors in the cold air.
- Wear a helmet if you're riding a bike, skateboarding or rollerblading.
- Layer your clothing so you can adjust your clothing to suit your body temperature.
- Wear shoes with good grip so you don’t slip over!
- Drink heaps of water.
- Ease into it by doing some light exercise to start off with (e.g. jumping jacks and jogging on the spot) to warm your muscles up a bit. This will stop injury or unnecessary pain.
- Stretch after you finish exercising to avoid injury.