Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Exercising Without Even Knowing It

Exercise can be a lot of different things to people.  For someone, it could be a great release of stress and tension accumulated throughout the day.  For another person, it could be their chance for some alone time.  But, for most Americans, it's just a hassle.  It's just too much work.  But it doesn't need to be that way. You can increase your exercise and activity load 10 fold by just doing your normal, daily routines a little differently.

I'm going to give you a list of some small things that you can do throughout your day that will increase your overall activity level which will increase your overall health and wellness.

#1 - Park further from the door.  When you park as close to the entrance of wherever you're going, you're robbing yourself of valuable walking time.  Yeah, it takes a little bit longer, but who doesn't have an extra 20 seconds here and there to spare.

#2 - Mow the lawn with a push mower.  I know that riding lawn mowers are faster and paying the neighbor kid $20 to mow your yard is easier, but this give you the perfect opportunity to burn some extra calories and get outside to breathe in some fresh air (not to mention save $20 every couple weeks).

#3 - Chew your food more than you're used to.  It's true that this won't do much for exercise or burning calories, but every little bit counts.  Not to mention that digestion starts in your mouth.  When you chew more thoroughly, the rest of your digestive system doesn't need to work as hard.

#4 - Add a little spice to your diet.  Cayenne pepper has been shown to have fat burning qualities.  This is typically in larger amouts, but if you add a little here and there, it won't be doing any harm.

#5 - Take the stairs.  Instead of always opting for the escalator or elevator.  Use the stairs.  Even if you work on the 37th floor, take the elevator part of the way and the stairs for the last 2 or 3 floors.

#6 - Rake the yard.  Just like # 2, you get outside, you get your body moving, and you get to enjoy the brisk autumn air.

#7 - Swap your bad-posture-inducing home desk chair for an exercise ball.  You will need to rely more on your core muscles and the other muscles in your body that don't get enough attention by sitting on an exercise ball.  If you do this at work, you will probably want to only do this for part of the day to start out.

#8 - Start a garden.  Once again, you get outside and you're getting some good movement into the joints of your spine and body.  Plus, you will be growing all kinds of fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs, and spices that will be much more flavorful and healthy than what you find in the grocery store.

#9 - If you have kids, play with them!  Wrestle around, play catch, kick around a soccer ball, play dress up, and whatever else your kids want to do.  It's gets you moving around and burns a couple calories here and there.

There you go.  A little extra exercise doesn't need to be time consuming, monotonous, or too much work.  By slightly changing your daily routine and habits, you can burn off some extra calories and have fun doing it!

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