Exercise When You’re Not Exercising

This weeks blog is written by Mark Laybourn, UR Personal Trainer & Pilates Teacher.

Firstly, a very happy new year to you all. I’m sure, like myself and my family, christmas and new year went past in a blur with the statutory indulgences along the way.

So now it’s time to get back on track and pick up from where most of us left off pre christmas.

So, exercise when you’re not exercising seems like a good starting point. Can it be done? Is it possible? Doesn’t exercise have to be confined to the gym environment?

Well, yes it can be done. It is certainly possible and it most definately doesn’t have to be confined to the gym.

Surely any form of body movement is a form of exercise, right?! But you don’t have to be holding a dumbbell, kettlebell, resistance band or using a piece of exercise equipment to do it.

The media/government in its worldly wisdom are telling us to walk more, run more, cycle shop-791582_1920more etc. But sometimes lifestyle is so busy and hectic that fitting this in is a challenge in itself. Children, shopping, work all affect this and how we can arrange this around our day to day diary.

So here’s an example of exercising when you’re not exercising. Shopping!! I’m sure you’ve read or heard reports telling us to park away from the shop/supermarket entrance to encourage more walking. So that’s fine, good idea. If nothing else, there’s more spaces (in theory) further away so less chance of a “Rodney” (or more commonly known as a plonker) pranging your car with their car door.

We now have these lovely “Bags for Life”. Very strong, perfect, of course for shopping and probably the only thing that would survive a nuclear war!! So how about treating your shopping as equipment for a farmers walk (even number of bags of course). Take your trolley to the trolley park, hopefully not the one next to your car. Now, I’m afraid I can’t be held responsible for how your pack your shopping so hopefully its fairly evenly weighted in each bag. And there you go, a small but very effective strength exercise, carrying your bags to the boot of your car.

And now for a wee bit of cardio.  This may appear that it’s aimed purely at commuters but we’ll go with it for the moment. We’ve all been to London, either with work or on a social visit so we’ve all experienced the extra long escalators at the numerous underground escalators-1838971_1920stations. Here’s something I do every time I go to London. When you approach the escalator, try to pick out someone who is roughly 1/3 to 1/2 way up standing still, and try to catch them up before they reach to top. The same can be done going down, just take extra care when walking down at speed.

This can also be done locally with a slight adaption as our shops escalators aren’t as long or as wide to walk past people, so the solution is…………………..THE STAIRS!! and if you’re carrying shopping bags, even better!!

As far as the department store life, it’s often quicker using the stairs than to wait for  a packed lift. Go for it. HAPPY SHOPPING!!!!!!!

Yours in health

Mark

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