The saying: a healthy mind, healthy body, is known to all. However, it can be difficult to find the motivation to play sports during the Canadian winter. Nonetheless, it is very important to maintain a healthy lifestyle through regular physical activity. The World Health Organization defines physical activity as “any movement produced by skeletal muscles that increases energy expenditure.” In a report published in 2018, the WHO explained that “sedentariness (lack of physical activity) is considered the fourth most common risk factor for death in the world (6%). It is also estimated to be the cause of 21-25% of breast or colon cancers, 27% of diabetes cases and about 30% of ischemic heart disease.”
The WHO recommends regular physical activities for its benefits:
“in adults, regular and appropriate physical activity reduces the risk of hypertension, coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes, breast and colon cancer, depression and falls; [Regular activity] improves bone and functional health; is a key determinant of energy expenditure and is therefore fundamental to energy balance and weight control”
Despite this, it is easy to find excuses for not getting enough exercise. Lack of energy and lack of time are factors to be taken into account. However, there are many solutions:
- Set goals to achieve, it takes 66 days to set a habit, start today, and in 65 days your routine will have become a need, and will no longer require the same motivation.
- Choose an activity that suits you. There are so many ways to exercise, from block, to yoga, the gym, and running to swimming. You have a lot of choices. More and more innovative sports are emerging such as paddle yoga, and all its variants, or water biking. You can practice physical activities alone or in groups with classes in sports halls, or martial arts. In short, there is something for ALL tastes.
- Find a friend to accompany you and motivate you to go. It is always easier to get motivated when someone is waiting for us.
- Record your victories, accomplishments and or progress.
- Plan a fixed schedule in your agenda, to oblige yourself and formalize the action.
- Equip yourself well. Choose clothes that are comfortable for sports, or high-performance equipment that will reduce the risk of injury. Avoid running in a flip-flops, use shoes that are appropriate for the activity you want to practice.
- Eat well, and don’t skip meals. You can ask for advice from a nutritionist, by making an appointment directly from your tap application. He/she will know how to advise you in the right way.
Last but not least, don’t let your budget constraints stop you. If you dont want to splurge on classes or a gym membership, you can simply run in a park, or train at home. Many fitness or yoga applications are available online to keep you motivated.