TIPS AND ADVICE

Nutrition and fitness go hand in hand

We’ve all heard that regular exercise helps increase energy levels, relieve stress, manage weight, and prevent disease, but many of us find it hard to fit exercise into our busy schedules or just get motivated to begin.1 But exercise goes hand in hand with nutrition to form a healthy lifestyle – one without the other is incomplete. It is surely worth making the effort to incorporate exercise into your daily life. Here we share some information and pointers we hope will help.

It doesn’t have to be complicated1

  1. Aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day
  2. Any physical activity of moderate intensity counts. You choose!
  3. Try to add some regular, vigorous exercise for extra health and fitness benefits
  4. Minimise the amount of time spent in prolonged sitting and break up long periods of sitting as often as possible

Build it up slowly

  • If you aren’t doing any physical activity, it is helpful to start by doing something easy or for a short amount of time.1 Gradually, you can build up the intensity and duration of exercise to the recommended amount

Plan ahead

  • Make exercise a part of your daily routine and write it down on your calendar or set a reminder on your smart phone or computer
  • Decide when and where you will exercise. You may use home equipment, visit a gym, local beach or swimming pool, or walk around your neighbourhood or a nearby park
  • Set out your clothes before your exercise session so you have no excuses

Make it fun

  • Find a physical-activity buddy such as a friend, family member or personal trainer. Join an exercise group or class. You’re more likely to enjoy yourself and less likely to bail out if you know that someone is planning to meet you!
  • Listen to music or an audio book, or watch television while you exercise. If you have an iPod or a smart phone, download a motivational or instructional podcast to accompany your workout

Take pride in your achievements

  • Once you have settled into a regular exercise program you will notice that you are walking or swimming a little further than at first, or perhaps you are working out a little harder or longer as it becomes easier. When you notice these achievements, take the time to pat yourself on the back. A little treat wouldn’t go astray (but make it a healthy one)

As always, be sure to consult your healthcare professional before beginning any physical activity program.

References

  1. Better Health Channel. Physical Activity – It’s Important. Available at: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/physical-activity-its-important?viewAsPdf=true. Accessed on 2 October 2018.