Your fitness levels and body composition, whatever they may be, are the result of your general lifestyle. So regardless of whether you go to the gym and train or go for a run etc, it is mostly what you do outside of your fitness routine that has the most profound effect. This will come down to your diet and daily activity levels.

Today we’re going to look at ways you can implement fitness into your life and make it a habit so it is ingrained into your subconscious, rather than going around in circles trying to do different types of exercise regimes. A great way to start getting fit is to start incorporating it into your daily activities. That can be as simple as walking to work or getting off public transport a couple of stops earlier so you can walk the end part of your journey. Activities like this allow you to get moving more often. I find it difficult to be able to walk long distances because I live in a city where you need a car, however I try to move around at work as much as possible. Go the longer way around to get to the restroom, go for a walk instead of sending an email etc. I try to get in 10k steps a day (really not much at all) without accounting for playing football and going to the gym. I’ve not had a fitness tracker long but I’m so glad I have one, I never take it off!

Getting fit should be fun for everyone, it shouldn’t feel like a chore and sometimes it does, that’s why it is better to ease yourself into it with walking (and tracking) as much as you can. It doesn’t raise your heart level much so won’t give you a great workout but it will help you lose some weight. Once you start tracking your steps, if you’re anything like me you will set yourself a target and ensure you hit it everyday. Friendly competition is a great way to get you getting those extra steps. A lot of fitness tracker apps allow you to add your friends to your app so you can keep an eye on how many steps they’ve done each day.

A great benefit from getting fit is that your body starts to become more efficient, you feel more awake, more productive and generally get more done. A study done on brain effectiveness (source below) shows that the brain becomes more effective with as little as two weeks of short term interval training. The brain is what controls the body and has a much higher level of energy consumption than our other organs when we are at rest (source below). I believe we should always strive to be better than we are, whether that means fitter, slimmer, happier, more successful or all of the above. I’m going to try and show you that getting fitter in the easiest way possible is the best place to start.

Blissful sleep
Since I started my fitness journey, some 12 years ago, there have been some major improvements in how my mind and body has improved and although I only just started tracking my steps I’d always try to get in extra walking/running time when I could. As a youngster I’d have trouble falling asleep at night, would be up all night and then want to sleep all day. Since I started putting in the effort to tire myself out during the day, I’d get into bed shattered at a reasonable time and fall asleep straight away. It was good, solid sleep and I know this because I started to wake up without my alarm, nice and early and full of energy. I was never on any caffeine back then and although I like to have a nice warm cup every now and then it’s more to do with it helping me to keep warm.

Whether or not you’re a morning person or feel the need to wake up earlier, I’m pretty sure we could all do with extra hours in the day. You can use it to work on your passion, get a new hobby, read great books or anything you want! Getting quality sleep is good for anyone and if it allows you to wake up without an alarm then why not?!?

Happy chappy
As we know, exercises releases endorphins and makes you feel great, however if you need more convincing, please see the source below. Who in this world doesn’t need a happiness boost all the time? The energy derived from extra exercise is a great source of happiness as it allows you to do more and gives you the motivation you need to do whatever you want. As you become physically more active you get a sense of achievement as you are getting fitter and fitter. Accomplishing anything, whether big or small will help you feel happier, a little competition with yourself goes a long way.

Another great thing about working out is that you feel better about your physical appearance as your muscles start to adapt to the stimulus you put them under. As I mentioned earlier, exercise helps you get a more restful sleep, the great thing about extra exercise and extra good quality sleep is that they both release endorphins and that means you get a double whammy of these great little hormones.

Better chance of being healthy
Although there is nothing that can stop absolutely every virus and sickness related bug attaching itself to you, exercising regularly gives you a great chance of fighting off whatever comes your way. Exercise makes your body ramp up its production of antibodies, antibodies are created by your immune system to fight off whatever bacteria or viruses enter your body. They are your eyes and ears as it were (they hunt to find any unwanted guests in your body), and the more you have the better! Antibodies also have a secondary job in that they help to produce other cells such as T cells and they help assist our immune systems (these are your attackers). Exercise has been shown to increase the production of antibodies by 300%!

Stress and anxiety open you open to sickness and you’re more susceptible to the more serious side of things such as strokes etc and although exercise isn’t the be all and end all of happiness it certainly helps. It’s also free! The best things in life are free! Go for a run, walk, go train in a gym, take up yoga, start a boot camp. All these things will help you be happier and in turn healthier. Win, win!

Cortisol is a stress hormone which the immune system needs a little bit of to function at its best however too much can hinder your immune system’s ability to do its job properly. Guess what? Exercise helps to lower cortisol levels in the body too.

How to get started
Well now that we’ve got the reason behind why you should implement fitness into your life and how you’ll come out on the other side a completely changed individual (for the better), let’s look at easy ways you can get on the wagon starting from now! A great form of low intensity exercise is walking, for the few that can incorporate walking into everyday life through necessity without having to alter anything, getting in enough steps into their day is easy. However, what if you can’t walk to/from work or school? What can you do? This is easy, get yourself a cheap fitness tracker so you can evaluate how many steps you’re doing. Then try to double or triple it. How? You need to start by making a conscious effort every single day to take the long way around (with everything).

Now I understand a lot of you will have extremely busy lives so this may not always be possible, however, where there’s a will there’s a way. When you’re going anywhere you always have a choice to take the lift, the escalator, visit the nearest toilet at work etc etc. Now however, you have a goal of x number of steps to hit per day so that means you need to forget all of your old lazy ways and start making an effort to get moving. If you can spare a few minutes, instead of sending an email, go visit that colleague and speak to them (if applicable of course) – we’re all losing our communication skills sitting behind a laptop so you should take a stand for the better!

Another great way of getting in some exercise without having to sacrifice your time at home is to eat your lunch at your desk and go for a long walk during lunch time. If it is possible, maybe even a quick trip to the gym! You would be fully energised for the afternoon and get an awesome restful nights sleep. This could be an opportunity to bond with fellow colleagues and make a pact to get fit during your lunch hour. We all have the time, we just sometimes need to get a bit creative as to how we spend it.

An important part of getting fit is actually just starting, once you get started and start reaping the benefits you won’t want to stop (hopefully). It’s also important to set yourself a goal, whatever it may be, big or small. A few examples that spring to mind for beginners could be something like 15000 steps per day or lose 3 kg or even something as simple as work out 3 times a week for 30 minutes. Keep it simple but do something that will challenge your body so your hormones can get working.

Get fit the easy way and grow your workouts from there. It doesn’t need to be difficult, it rarely ever is. Simple is always best. GSY! Subscribe for more great content.

Sources
http://journals.sagepub.com/eprint/bqGdKKN3a7wNbkQNCw28/full