Last week we talked about making 2021 the year to reclaim (or maintain) our health. We talked about setting realistic goals and managing our New Year’s resolutions. The healthcare professionals at FAMC are here to help and guide you in the process. Just remember, it is never too late to start a healthy habit, or, better manage health conditions.
One of the best ways to improve health is to increase physical activity. Physical activity helps improve overall health, fitness, and quality of life. It helps reduce the risk of chronic conditions like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, many types of cancer, depression and anxiety, and dementia. Mayo clinic states that exercise helps control weight, enhances mood, increases energy, and helps improve sleep. So, it is highly likely that whatever new year’s resolution you have set for yourself, it is likely that exercise will help.
Physical activity includes cardio or aerobic activity and muscle strengthening. The CDC recommends adults get 150 minutes or moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week along with muscle-strengthening activities at least two days a week. It is recommended that school-aged children participate in one hour or more of physical activity each day, and preschool children should be physically active throughout the day with plenty of opportunities for active play.
If you have pain, decreased mobility, or medical conditions that limit your ability to exercise, talk to your primary care provider about a therapy evaluation. We can help you improve your strength, range of motion, and balance so you can safely exercise on your own. If you are wondering how to get started or are looking for a group to be accountable to, consider participating in one of our online exercise classes. FAMC and SDSU Extension have partnered to offer Fit and Strong @ Home and Walk With Ease at no cost. Fit and Strong @ Home starts soon. If interested call 1-888-484-3800 or go to https://bcbh-live.questionpro.com to sign up.
If you are already physically active and looking for ways to increase your activity level, here are some suggestions.
1. Talk to your doctor if you have a chronic condition like Type 2 diabetes or heart disease.
2. Get the support of your friends and family and invite them to get active with you.
3. Start slowly and add time, frequency, or intensity every week.
4. Schedule physical activity for time in the day or week when you are most energetic.
5. Walk instead of drive to nearby destinations. Or, park the car farther away and get a quick walk in to your destination.