Not only can exercise improve your mood (yay!) and raise your self-esteem (whoop!), it can also counteract your diet when it’s not at its best.. and let’s face it we can all drift off our ideal diet when we’re busy or stressed. Exercise can also lead to better sleep (watch out: a sleep deprived brain struggles to make the best decisions), and has shown to reduce risk of depression. So here are a few tips and tricks from us ahead of National Workouts & Wellbeing Week. Please share yours too, we’d love to hear from you!
Getting motivated can be a struggle so here’s some tops tips on getting going!!
For Fun not just Fitness
Increasing the amount of exercise you do doesn’t have to mean running for hours on a treadmill. If you focus more on finding activities, you genuinely enjoy getting healthier won’t feel like a chore and instead something you look forward to. If you’re the adventurous type, there is a huge variety of activities you can give a go. For example: rock climbing, martial arts, trampolining, yoga, water sports or dry slope skiing. Going to new activities with a buddy can also make working out more fun, and you can lean on each other for support.
Make it Achievable
When it comes to fitness there is no point going overboard creating a crazy cardio workout plan. If you’re starting from a relatively sedentary lifestyle you may want to start by committing to just 1-2 activities a week. Remember it’s much better to create a routine that you can stick to and enjoy than one that will burn you out and lead you to quit.
Sleep & Eat Well!
Try and get a good night’s sleep and a natural boost of energy with a healthy snack too (link to perkier webstore) to help you hit your goals, and stay motivated.
Working with your Routine
30 minutes of cardio in the morning has been proven to increase productivity by 10% … and we’re definitely up for a bit of that! So if you commute, see if you could incorporate more walking, like get off the bus or tube earlier, walk the longer way into Uni or the office, or take walks during your lunch breaks. If there is a gym on your way you could pop in for quick workouts.
If you spend a lot of time at home YouTube and Pinterest are packed with home workout options. Also things like housework, walking to the shops and just generally sitting down less can all be beneficial for fitness.
Making Fitness Affordable
Sometimes the price of expensive exercise classes can be off-putting. The good news is many gyms and activity centres offer free or discounted introductory sessions. Depending on the facilities in your area this can mean that you can trial a huge range of activities before spending any money! Here are some great free sessions you can try around the UK:
Gyms: Anytime Fitness (1 day free pass), Fitness First (3 day free pass), Pure Gym (1 day free pass), Nuffield Health (1 day free pass), Better (1 day free pass inc swimming), Energie Fitness (1 day free pass) and Freedom leisure (1 day free pass).
MoveGB: Offers a huge variety of activities around the UK from antigravity yoga to Thai boxing, they have loads of opportunities to try new things! You can get a free 10 day pass to try out these activities here.
Outdoor running: Running around your local park is a great free way to exercise. Parkrun is free and happens every week at a huge variety of locations. You get weekly times for your events and it has a great community surrounding it. You can register on their page here.
Whilst fitness is a great way to improve your overall health and mood it’s always much more effective when done in conjunction with a good diet. When you’re exercising more your daily protein requirements can increase slightly depending on how much exercise you’re doing. Our Perkier snack bars can add 6g of protein to your daily diet, or start the day with a Perkier porridge with 10g protein per pot. Additionally, if you want an extra vegan protein boost our favourite vegan protein powder is Raw Sport, which comes in many great flavours and contains probiotics for good gut health.
For some more great healthy eating ideas to fuel your fitness February check out our recipe page.
Good luck and don’t forget to share what activities you’re getting up to with us on our social media!