Put Down the Remote and Exercise: A Guide to Getting Active and Healthy!
Obesity has not always been such a glaring issue for human beings, especially in the United States. As recently as 1985, only a small number of states registered around 10% of their populations as being overweight, with an even smaller number of states registering up to 15%. Compared to today, the majority of the states’ obesity levels fall between 20% to over 30%.
What caused this great change? There are many different factors; including lifestyle changes and processed food are the prime factors for America’s weight issues. Whereas in the past children played outdoors for hours and adults might have gone out to socialize or enjoy sporting activities; today both groups tend to sit indoors in front of the television or playing video games while simultaneously snacking. When this behavior becomes standard, it is no wonder that we’ve become unhealthy. However, with just a little effort, anyone can start getting active and from there it is easy to increase it slightly more each day. Being healthy can involve rather simple activities and this guide will show that it is definitely not as daunting as it might appear!
Why get active?
Being active, even in small amounts, is an incredibly effective way to help our bodies become healthier and improve our overall body function. Physical activity does not necessarily have to take an enormous amount of time or effort. In fact, it can easily be integrated into our day-to-day routines. Teaming up with a friend is another fun way of staying motivated and cheering each other on and helps to strengthen relationships too, as opposed to staring at the television for hours at home. For an adult between 18 and 65 years old, it is suggested that each week they need around two and a half hours of aerobic activity, such as a quick walk as well as activities that focus on muscle strength. When you think about it, it isn’t much at all per week. Splitting it up into ten-minute groups is just as effective too.
- Obesity Trends: An interactive U.S. map showing obesity trends from 1985 to 2009.
- Childhood Obesity: An article on childhood obesity and how it creates risks for numerous dangerous diseases.
- Benefits of Physical Activity: Learn about the disease risks that are lowered by engaging in physical activity.
- Health Risks of Being Overweight: Heart disease and cancer are just some of the dangers posed by being overweight. (PDF)
- Physical Activity for Older People: Physical activity can help ward off high blood pressure, depression, cancer and lower the risks of falls and arthritis in active older people.
- Lifestyle and Health Risks: How modern lifestyles negatively impact our health.
- Osteoporosis: A lack of exercise can lead to degeneration of bones and the onset of osteoporosis.
- Constipation: Although it may not seem obvious, a lack of exercise does cause constipation and other related problems with the digestive system.
- Diabetes: Research shows that a healthy diet and regular physical activity are key in preventing diabetes.
Easy Ways to Get Fit
- Get Moving: Small steps to incorporate physical activity into your regular routine.
- Be Active Your Way: A booklet from the Department of Health Services showing how to incorporate physical activity into your daily life. (PDF)
- Basic Steps: Did you know that walking the dog or mowing the lawn counts as physical activity? Learn more about the basics of getting active.
- Fitness for Heart Disease Patients: Heart patients have to take special care in practicing the right types of activity in the correct amounts.
- Technology Workouts: Fitness doesn’t mean ditching the TV and other tech gadgets. Here’s a way to combine the two.
- Convenient Fitness: How to get fit while doing chores or working at the office.
- Bellydancing: Bellydancing is an incredibly fun dance for women of all sizes to learn and also gently works out core muscle groups in your arms, legs and torso.
- Burning Calories at Home: An explanation of how many calories can be shed by doing simple household tasks.
- Make Time for Fitness: A helpful explanation on how to set aside time for physical fitness and how to involve friends and family.
- Fitness for Kids Who Don’t Like Sports: A guide to involving kids in physical activity even if they don’t enjoy regular sports.
- Fitness for Adults and Kids: A series of simple and fun fitness activities that adults can practice in a group with their children.
- Exercise for Senior Citizens: A free online booklet on safe exercise practices for older adults.
- Fun Activities for Adults: Dodgeball, dancing and rollerblading are a few suggestions in this article as alternative to boring old jogging.
- Video Game Fitness: Games like Dance Dance Revolution and Wii fitness programs are a great way to start working out without hitting the gym.
- Canine Motivation: Having a dog forces owners to fulfill fitness requirements by walking and playing with their pets everyday.
- Staircase Workout: Instead of waiting for the elevator, take the stairs and enjoy a quick, free fitness workout.
- Family Activities: A list of fun physical games that involve the whole family.
- Winter Workouts: Snow might put a damper on our best fitness resolutions, but did you know that building a snowman burns almost 300 calories?
- Head to the Mall: Learn about mall-walking – now shopping can count as exercise!
- Outdoor Activities: A guide to outdoor activity ideas and locations.
- Use a Pedometer: A pedometer is a tiny clip-on device that counts the number of footsteps you take and can help measure the number of calories you burn.
- Fitness Tips: Small tips on how to get fit everyday and anywhere.
- Running for Beginners: A guide on how to start running with minimal effort.
- Simple Yoga and Meditation: An easy introduction to yoga and meditation at home.
- Start a Walking Group: With friends or co-workers, walking is much more fun when you have company!
- Fitness Motivation: A practical, inspirational guide on how to stay motivated with your fitness routine.
- Fitness Apps: Use your phone to stay fit with these healthy living apps.
- Running Motivational App: An app from Nike offers free training guides and allows Facebook friends to cheer you on while you run.
- Weight Management Tools: Calculate your weight and body mass and learn how to interpret the results.