If you are moving to another country, you may be concerned about keeping up your daily physical activity. Everyone knows that physical activity is important and yet many fail to do anything about it.
When asked if physical activity is beneficial for health, the majority of adults in the US will respond positively. Yet, approximately 80% of North Americans do not meet the national Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans which include engaging in moderate aerobic activity for at least 30 minutes on five days per week and muscle-strengthening at least two days per week.
We know that regular physical activity can improve the health and quality of life of individuals of all ages, regardless of the presence of a chronic disease or disability. Among all adults, physical activity can lower the risk of:
- Early death
- Coronary heart disease
- High blood pressure
- Type 2 diabetes
- Breast and colon cancer
In addition, physical activity has been shown to improve:
- Bone health
- Cardiovascular and muscular fitness
- Range of motion and balance
- Cognitive function
- Body composition
- Mental and emotional status
As you move and settle into your new world home, the timing is right to establish a regular pattern of physical activity in your daily life. There are many ways to incorporate exercise into your new lifestyle.
- Get out and explore on foot
Walk and explore new neighborhoods, historical sites, markets and local vendors, parks or recreational areas. Walking tours are excellent ways to increase steps and learn your way about your new city.
- Connect with active groups
Many cities around the world have walking, hiking, running, and cycling clubs. Or form your own with friends you meet. Exercising with others is motivating, provides a social outlet and an opportunity to meet other like-minded individuals.
- Search out a local yoga, tai chi, or pilates class
I have found Yoga is happening everywhere in the world, sometimes in the local parks and on the beaches.
- Take the stairs
Want a great bout of exercise? Take the stairs whenever you find them. They are everywhere!
- Locate a nearby gym, health club, or natatorium
Most offer classes, short-term passes, or memberships to their facilities.
- Rent a bike at the local bike shop
On a bike, you can explore farther than you can walk.
You just might have so much fun you’ll end up purchasing the bike for commutes, local errands, and exercise.
- Go hiking
Rural areas provide excellent opportunities to explore the countryside on hiking trails and pathways.
- Join a Move-Friendly World
Start to move your body every hour. Research shows that frequent bouts of light activity such as stepping in place, calf raises, or doing moderate housework offer health benefits.
These spurts of activity can give you a start on meeting your exercise goals even though they are not performed in a traditional gym setting or with a specific routine.
- Take a dance class
Salsa, bosa nova, tango, line dancing, or hip hop will energize your day. Put on the music and shake that booty!
- Find a par course
A par course consists of 6-10 stations with individual strength, cardiovascular or stretching exercises performed at each station and is usually located in parks or along walking paths.
- Search out the local swimming hole
The world offers the best places for swimming if you take the time to inquire or explore the local swimming beach, pond, or bay.
The most important thing is to avoid being sedentary.
Share your ideas with us on how you incorporate daily physical activity into your lifestyle. We can all motivate each other.
by: Gwen Hyatt