If you’re like me, you’d far rather be reading, writing, watching a great movie or drinking wine with friends than exercising. Exercising for me is something I have to pay attention to, so I’m always contemplating how to keep fit without stressing.
The thought of getting all hot and sweaty and going for a jog, doesn’t really set my fires alight. I’m constantly trying to trick myself into getting the exercise I know I should be doing. How to stay fit and healthy and get fit at home are my main priorities on a daily basis.
I love my walks though. Especially when they involve getting out and about somewhere pretty, or on the beach, or straight out of my front door wherever I am – that way I can just put my trainers on, grab my best sun protection hat and GO without too much thinking about it.
Health and Fitness Tips
I believe fitness goes hand in hand with health. Eating wisely, exercising and staying engaged with life and friends are all important as we try to maintain good health as we get older.
So without further ado, here are some of the ways I try to get my daily dozen, fitness tips and simple ways for you to get in good shape or stay in good shape without trying too hard, or stressing out about it.
If you’re not exercising already – then Start Exercising today. You’ll feel so much better.
Walking (and talking maybe!)
Pick a walk that you love – a route you don’t have to think about and have your shoes and exercise gear by the bed ready for you to jump straight into each morning.
Take every chance to find things to do in your spare time which involve walking – visit parks, offer to take a friend’s dog for a walk (if you like dogs), arrange to have coffee with a friend at the beach – but after your walk.
Seek out outdoor exhibitions in your home town. In Perth, we recently had a street art Cow Parade, and it was a marvellous way of getting out for a walk but adding in some cerebral interest. We hardly noticed that we walked for nearly three hours on a treasure hunt to seek out as many painted cow models as we could. And it wasn’t just the walk in this case which was healthy – the art provided stimulus for our minds. We talked about the colours and textures, and the symbolism of the painting. We laughed and had fun and we got thinking. All super healthy stuff.
You can read more and see pictures here on my WA blog ZigaZag : Udderly Fantastic Perth Cow Parade
Running (isn’t for me anymore)
But it is for some people. Take my blogging friend Annabel Candy. Here’s what she had to say about a recent quest in her post about running a half marathon for charity in Luang Prabang, Laos :
“Mentally I struggle with running. I’ve never been sporty and have always avoided heavy exercise. Maybe I’ve got hypothermosis, a phobia of excessive sweating which is linked to social anxiety. Maybe the shortness of breath running causes feels like a panic attack. Or maybe I’m just lazy. Whatever the reason, the most common thoughts that spring to mind when I’m running are: “I hate this!”, “Just stop!” and “You’re useless!” I try to practice mindfulness and not buy into these thoughts. They are just thoughts and my mantra valiantly tries to drown them out. Just keep running. Just keep running.: Annabel Candy
Bicycling (I Love)
If you learnt to cycle as a child – you can cycle now. No excuses. Find a bike path near you and get out and enjoy the outdoors. You don’t have to go crazy fast. Take a friend. Pack a cool drink or a flask of coffee and a sandwich and stop half way to have a picnic. Again, it’s not just about the ride – fresh air is good for you and being out in the open is good for your soul.
Take The Stairs (I do – do you?)
Do you have stairs at home? Don’t leave a laundry basket at the bottom and put things in it through the day to take up in one go (like I used to do!) No, if you’re able to then march up and down the stairs every time you have something to take to the upper level. Even if it’s a pair of socks.
No stairs at home? Then find a small wall, or something in a park that you can step up and down onto (changing stepping legs half way through your routine). Start with just a few steps and work up. During my morning walks I do 25 on one leg and 25 on the other on a small wall (the size of a large step) which I espied, handily circumferencing a children’s sandy playground.
Oh, and don’t forget to take the stairs at work and at train stations, and everywhere you can. Say NO to lifts and escalators. It all counts.
Exercise at home
Don’t know about you but I’m not one for exercise classes. When I was younger I used to love them, but now I can’t be doing with the getting there and dressing up in fancy exercise gear.
If I have to drive there, look good, wait for the class to begin, and pay, I’m already putting my good intention at a disadvantage, and I know I’ll make excuses not to go.
So I do try to do some exercises to get fit at home.
I’ve done some Pilates and yoga in the past, so I know a little bit about what I’m doing and I’ve bought some Pilates and yoga dvd’s which I play at home on the TV and do my own classes.
They are just simple daily exercises to stay fit which work for me.
This means I can fit in 20 mins or 30 mins before Dave comes home, or before I need to go shopping, or in between writing blog posts – it’s so much easier and I can be spontaneous. Just whip off my day clothes and exercise in my bra and knickers if necessary! No fancy clothes required.
On the Sea Princess World Cruise, I’d walk around the promenade deck, and lift a few light weights in the gym to help keep in shape.
Love gardening? All that bending and lifting it’s good for you. Get out there and plant some plants. Er, which reminds me … 😉
But in our last house in Bunbury, together with Dave, I did create a Bali inspired Garden – you can read about how we did it here: Balinese Garden.
Get out in or on the water
If you enjoy being in or on the water then that’s great. Of course there’s swimming or water aerobics, but how about meeting a friend and going kayaking on a sleepy river for a change? You might have a laugh, and you’ll be out there exercising (don’t forget the life jacket!).
Swimming is gorgeous in the heat of our Australian summer’s.
Try to swim if you can even if it’s only a 10 minute dip. Getting your body moving whenever possible is my mantra.
One of my friends, Seana, is on a quest to swim the world now she’s over 50. Check our her fantastic blog below for swim guides, books about swimming, hotel pool bucket lists, her latest swims, and swimming holidays.
I’m a slow swimmer, fast talker. Join me in a bold attempt to enjoy a swim in every country on this beautiful blue planet. Seana, Swim the World Travel.
Do things with your friends
If you need more motivation to get out and exercise then make a regular date to go for a walk or bike ride, or kayak, or swim or whatever, with friends. There’s nothing like being held accountable and feeling like you might let others down if you don’t turn up to motivate you to stay in shape.
Just Do It!
As we get older we need to get fit stay fit and keep as healthy as possible.
I think a FitBit makes a great motivator to get out and exercise. Do you have one? If not, here are some to choose from. FitBit Models to Choose From
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