Unfortunately for many, there just aren't enough hours in the day to go to the gym or health club. It might also be the case that we simply don't want to spend a lot of time on some kind of fitness equipment. Here's the good news: you can stay healthy without going to the gym. It's actually quite simple to incorporate some healthy exercises into your everyday routine, and that can be enough to keep your body looking and feeling good. Naturally, there's also absolutely nothing wrong with going to the health club if your schedule allows for it.
Movement and stretching first thing in the morning
Everyday physical activity doesn't have to be strenuous, for example going for a long jog in the morning. Instead, we can gently improve our mobility just after getting out of bed. Some people might experience joint stiffness, especially early in the day, and so they need a little longer to get the body up to speed. This is why, just after waking, it's recommended to add a few stretching exercises to your daily routine.
Spread out your training throughout the whole day
During the day, take a few minutes for some easy exercises. You could do strengthening movements like deep knee bends, push ups or sit ups several times throughout the day. A few minutes is enough. You don't need dumbbells or any other fitness equipment – there are many exercises that you can do with your bodyweight alone. Have a look on the Internet and you're sure to find something that works for you. Pay attention to maintaining good form, and try to keep it simple.
Some easy endurance training is even easier to incorporate into your day: walk instead of using the escalator or elevator, take the long way when walking between your car and your destination, or just have a stroll around the block whenever you get home. Let your imagination run wild and find fun ways to improve your physical condition. An even better option would be to leave your car at home and use your bicycle instead, but for many that might not be possible.
Of course you "should" go to the gym or work up a sweat from time to time
It's important for people of all ages to combine strength and endurance training. At least once per week, take on something a little more challenging and work up a sweat. Running is of course an option, but you might also go for a bicycle ride or a swim. There are many possibilities for such physical activity, but keep in mind that combined cardiovascular and strength training is best…and add in some gentle stretches as well.
OUR TIP: One of the most important ways to improve fitness – the squat!
This exercise reduces stiffness in ankle, knee and hip joints, and it also increases spinal mobility. Stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart, and carefully lower your body, squatting all the way down so that your backside is as close as possible to the floor (see the photo on the right). Stay in this position for a bit, and work on improving your balance. If you can do this movement easily and without pain, that means that you are already quite mobile and at the same time you have good joint stability. On the other hand, if you experience problems while doing this exercise, then practise a little every day until you can eventually get all the way to the ground and maintain your balance. Once you can do it easily, try reading your newspaper in this position. The longer you can do this exercise the better. If you have pain when attempting this movement, consult with your doctor or other health professional before trying to progress.
For even more stability while doing your daily exercises, we recommend the TriggerMoving Insoles developed by Dr. Lanz. Thanks to their proprioceptive effects, your training starts in the soles of your feet!
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