BHF Physical Activity Specialist Lisa Young offers tips on how you can be active every day, and demonstrates a 10-minute workout you can do in your living room.
Regular physical activity can help you drop a dress (or trouser) size and will also make you feel fitter, more energized and better able to cope with life’s ups and downs.
You don’t have to drag yourself to the gym for hours on end. Improve your health and wellbeing by building up to 150 minutes of activity a week at an intensity that makes you feel warmer, breathe harder and makes your heart beat faster than usual; every 10 minutes counts. Here are my top tips and a 10-minute workout to get you started.
Build this 10-minute heart-healthy workout into your weekly plan. Do each exercise for 30 seconds at a moderate intensity and then rest for 30 seconds. Repeat each exercise twice. If you find the exercises getting easier, increase the number of times you repeat each one, and/or increase the time you spend doing it, decrease time spent resting between exercises and/or add more exercises to the workout.
Can be done on the floor or with a gym ball. Focus on keeping your back in a neutral position, contract your stomach muscles, lift your shoulders and curl your chest towards your knees. Slowly lower to start position, remember to breathe out and squeeze your abs on the way down.
Standing with feet slightly wider than shoulders, engage your stomach muscles, keep your back straight and lower your bottom as if you are going to sit on a chair, come back up to standing. Breathe in on the down motion and out on the way up.
3. Jumping jacks
Stand with feet together and arms by your side, jump in the air, split your legs and raise arms so you look like a star shape. Jump again to return to first position. Repeat continuously, keep breathing. Keep knees slightly bent at all times.
Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, make a fist, bend arms with elbows at your waist. Extend one arm in front of you at shoulder height. Return to starting position. Repeat with other arm. Breathe out on each punch.
5. High knees
Jog on the spot and raise knees to waist height so your legs are pumping up and down. Keep stomach muscles engaged to help keep your balance. Remember to keep breathing.
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