The holidays are over for most of us and even though we’re currently enjoying a mini-September heatwave the signs of Autumn are starting to appear. It may not seem like it right now, but colder weather will soon be upon us and with it the threat of colds and flu. After the past year we’re all fully aware of the need to keep healthy but there is only so much we can do to avoid colds and viruses. The good news is there are simple things we can do to help boost our immune systems, so we are better equipped to fight off any nasty bugs.
A study done last year at the height of the pandemic showed how obesity and inactivity can lower the immune system. One of the simplest things we can do to help support the immune system and give ourselves a fighting chance against respiratory illnesses is to make sure we stay active, whether that be walking every day or taking part in regular exercise classes. The study found we are much more likely to see an improvement in our immune response if we partake in regular moderate exercise rather than prolonged intense exercise (especially if you have been exposed to any type of cold virus). The key is to be consistent, so make it part of your daily routine and reap the benefits.
Motivation is key
If you find it difficult to motivate yourself you could try joining a fitness class with a friend- you’re more likely to stick to the routine if you have a friend who is relying on you to keep turning up. You could also plan to walk every day with a friend or group of friends- walking daily is a great way to get some exercise and the social aspect of walking with friends will help boost your mental well-being. Above all you need to make sure you are having fun, or you’ll find it hard to stick to, so pick an activity you enjoy or mix it up and do a few different things each week.
How long do you need to exercise for to see the benefits?
The study recommends about 30-60 minutes of brisk walking every day to help boost your immune system.
Other things you can do to boost your immune system:
As always, if you are new to exercise you should take it slowly to begin with, listen to your body and build up gradually.
Contact Amanda if you would like any advice or support with starting any of Smart Fitt’s fitness classes.
You might have set yourself fitness challenges over lockdown such as joining an online exercise class or virtual running/cycling but have you thought of setting yourself a challenge to help bring you out of lockdown?
Perhaps you’ve seen the Couch to 5K challenge. A steady, achievable challenge that will see you go from little or no running to completing a 5K in a matter of weeks. If you already enjoy running/jogging you could sign up to a local Park Run once they all start up again.
Physical and Mental Benefits
It can’t be stated enough how amazing exercise is for us both physically and mentally but like anything in life it’s easy to fall into a rut. Doing something a bit different really engages your body and mind, forcing you to use muscles you might not have used for a while or concentrate on something you’ve not done before.
Some examples of challenges you could set yourself are:
Open Water Swimming
Amanda recently challenged herself to try open water swimming. Amanda classes herself as a pretty good swimmer but it was always in a pool. Swimming in open water is completely different. The release of endorphins post swim leaves you feeling on top of the world! It really reinforces how encouraging ourselves to try different activities challenges the body to work in a different way, using different muscles and truly engaging the brain.
Fitness You Will Love!
Starting up an exercise regime might seem daunting now the gyms have reopened and exercise classes can resume but setting yourself a simple fitness challenge will help you get back on track and reignite your love for fitness!.. It doesn’t have to be anything big or daunting, you can just set yourself small, easily achievable challenges such as attending a class for 1 month or walking 30 minutes every day for 30 days and see how much better you feel once you’ve completed your challenge.
New Fitness Challenge
Giving yourself a new fitness challenge can have many positive effects, not just the obvious physical effects but the positive mental benefits such as feelings of accomplishment and pride as well as the amazing endorphins exercise gives us. If you set yourself an achievable, smaller challenge to start with you might just find yourself itching for the next challenge to conquer!
If you need any advice or support on your fitness journey Amanda offers personal coaching: Find out more about Fitness Coaching >
At last things are beginning to look a bit brighter and we can tentatively start meeting up with our friends and family. This also means we can start to welcome everyone back to our wonderful Move It Or Lose It classes! What better way to enjoy exercise than with friendly faces followed by a chat and a cuppa? *
Not Just an Exercise Class
We all know how much Amanda loves exercise but it’s not just the physical aspect of the class, it’s also about the social side and the positive impact that has on our wellbeing. The past year has been tough, especially for those who live alone or who have had to shield and that’s what makes classes like our MIOLI class so important. Having a reason to come out, meet with friends and have a bit of a giggle has huge benefits. Couple that with a bit of light exercise and you’ve got the perfect remedy.
At MIOLI a combination of seated exercises, group exercises, lots of props and of course fun and laughter will help improve mobility and flexibility. There is growing evidence that regular exercise can also help protect us from developing dementia. To really lift the spirits we all enjoy a good sing along at MIOLI, it’s lots of fun and it can even help with stress and anxiety.
Get Back Into the Groove!
Starting up exercise again can seem daunting, especially after such a long time away. There’s no need to worry, Amanda will ensure that the MIOLI class will ease you back in slowly and as always all the exercises can be adapted to suit your particular needs. Most importantly, MIOLI classes are all about joining in and having fun.
Come along to your local class, meet up with friends old and new and get moving!
The following Move It Or Lose It classes are currently running:
*Please note: Due to Covid Move It Or Lose It classes are not resuming at Tallington, Empingham, Baston and Corby Glen. You are free to join one of our other classes but it is important to book your place.