How active we are and how we feel are related. What we do to our bodies makes a big difference to our wellbeing.
Being active can affect our wellbeing in different ways. So, let’s look at how being active can affect our mood.
We get feel-good hormones called endorphins when physically active – this helps us sleep and feel better. Of course, physical activity leads to improved fitness, which will make you feel better in general. However, you don’t need to start spending money to become super fit. Small amounts of regular physical activity will improve your wellbeing – especially if it’s doing something you enjoy.
So here are some small changes we can all make in our day-to-day.
1. Set a regular walking time
Taking a brisk walk at lunchtime once or twice a week is a great way to bring a small amount of physical activity into your day. Try walking to where you are going more often. Going for a walk can be a great way to clear your head. You can also consider listening to music or a podcast when you are out and about.
If you need a little help fitting more physical activity into your day, try the Active 10 app. It helps you get short bursts of brisk walking into your day.
There are also lots of local walking groups that you can join. Try Walking for Health to get some inspiration. The Telford T50 50 mile trail can also help you to get out and explore Telford and Wrekin.
If walking is not your thing, then try swimming, cycling or getting active in the garden.
2. Pick up an old activity
Is there an activity you used to enjoy? Consider picking it up again.
There are lots of groups in local areas open to all levels of ability. What’s more, studies show that time in green spaces is beneficial, so head to your local park if you can!
3. Take up running with Couch to 5K
Taking up running can seem like a scary prospect, especially if you feel out of shape or unfit. However, the Couch to 5K is a free running plan for absolute beginners.
Running is easy to take up as it requires little equipment, just a good pair of running shoes.
How might you feel if you go from a complete running novice to running a 5K? Find out for yourself by downloading the Couch to 5K app.
4. Be active in the home
It can be as simple as making a point to climb the stairs regularly. Any exercise counts so long as you feel you have exerted yourself and your breathing increases. In fact, stair climbing burns more calories per minute than jogging.
Whatever you do, start small, make it a regular thing. You will naturally notice that you will be able to push yourself to do more every so often. Just keep it at your own pace.
To help get you started, the NHS has several gym-free routines you can do in your own home. A good selection of free workout routines can also be found on the Sport England Website.
5. Get one to one support at a gym
If the gym is your thing, but you have never been before or are not sure what to do, you should consider the ‘aspirations’ 1:1 support programme. It’s designed for people who are new to physical activity.
When you sign up your dedicated physical activity coordinator will guide you through a support programme tailored to you. They will set you exercises to do, goals to meet, and ensure you enjoy what you are doing.
There are also lots of outdoor gyms in Telford and Wrekin that are free to use. There are several across Telford and Wrekin. Check out our local outdoor gyms guide.
Being active is not about spending hours and hours being super fit and active. Well, you can if you want to, but it’s best to find activities you enjoy and make them a part of your life.
Remember, you only need to make small and gradual changes to feel the benefit of improved wellbeing. Taking on too much can demotivate you. So keep it small and simple.
Want to know more about improving how you feel?
We have lots more tips and information to share with you that can help improve how you feel.
Join our Year of Wellbeing and make a pledge to improve your wellbeing this year. Once you have made your pledge, we will email you with tips and information you easily can put into practice – as well as helpful reminders to help you achieve your wellbeing goal.
This is your time to feel healthier and happier – join the year of wellbeing today.