Women of all ages and abilities can support their health and strength with a fitness routine. The key is to start small and build up your daily routine over time.
It is recommended that you do 150 minutes of moderate physical activity a week. This includes activities such as brisk walking and dancing.
1. Exercise Regularly
Women who exercise regularly are more likely to have healthy bodies. Regular daily exercise can help maintain a healthy weight, strengthen muscles and bones, improve mood and boost energy levels.
Many women face barriers to physical activity, including lack of time, cost and perceived sexism (women who think child rearing and domestic chores are ‘women’s work’ may be less inclined to take time out for themselves). But exercise doesn’t have to be expensive or a full-time commitment. Three 10-minute bouts of exercise a day can have the same benefits as one 30-minute session.
Plus, simple activities such as walking up and down the stairs or gardening can count as cardiovascular exercise. Add to this by using a zero gravity luxury recliner after exercise to aid in muscle recovery and you can get your health and fitness goals on track.
2. Eat Healthy
Many women tend to put their own health needs last, but taking care of yourself will actually help you take better care of those who are most important to you. This includes following an annual wellness check to look for potential health issues that could be more easily treated and managed when caught early.
It’s also important to eat healthy, especially in the days leading up to and after exercising. Try to eat whole foods that are rich in fiber and protein (like lean meats, fish, eggs, nuts and beans) and avoid processed foods and sugary treats.
You should also aim to eat a variety of colors to ensure you’re getting all the nutrients your body needs. For instance, colorful fruits and vegetables are rich in antioxidants that can boost mood and reduce inflammation.
3. Get Enough Sleep
Getting enough sleep is one of the most important things you can do for your health. It is essential for both mental and physical health, and can help you avoid many common illnesses.
Make sure you get 7-9 hours of sleep every night. Avoid exercising close to bedtime, and keep electronics out of the bedroom (TVs, tablets, computers).
Try a relaxing routine before you go to sleep. You can do things like reading a book or meditating. Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and large meals in the hours leading up to sleep. If you need to nap, limit it to 20-30 minutes, and make sure to wake up around the same time each day. Establishing a consistent schedule will improve sleep quality.
4. Manage Your Stress
If you find that your stress levels are consistently high, try to identify the sources of your anxiety and make changes. For example, if the evening news or a particular person in your life stresses you out, find ways to cope with these issues.
Keeping up with a regular exercise routine also helps manage stress. If you can, opt for rhythmic activities that burn away tension, like walking, swimming, dancing or cycling.
If your current methods of coping with stress aren’t helping, consider talking to a counselor or psychologist who can teach you better techniques. They may suggest cognitive behavioral therapy or other proven strategies for stress reduction. They might also encourage you to reach out to family and friends for support. Moreover, they can suggest healthier options for managing your stress, such as meditating or participating in a soothing activity, such as yoga.
5. Stay Hydrated
The human body is around 60% water, so it’s important to drink enough fluids. Experts recommend that adults drink eight 8-ounce glasses (or 237 milliliters) of water per day, but fluid requirements vary by person and activity level.
If you exercise hard, for instance, you’ll need to drink more fluids to cover the loss of liquid through sweat. The same goes for hot or humid weather, or if you’re at high altitudes.
Avoid sugary sports drinks, though. They typically have more calories than needed, and they can wreak havoc on your blood sugar levels. Aim to get most of your fluids from beverages like water, unsweetened tea or coffee and 100% vegetable juice. Water-rich foods, such as fruit and vegetables, also count towards hydration.