Beyond Sports: Simple Ways to Increase Activity to Boost Brain Health for National Fitness Month
Throughout the month, we’ve been talking about National Physical Fitness and Sports Month. Last week, we took a look at how sports boost brain health and some fun sports to try to enjoy those benefits.
Not everyone loves sports, and not everyone can play sports. The good news – even small increases in activity can boost brain health. Moving more can also help mood, weight control, sleep, stress, and increase longevity.
You don't have to play a game of basketball, head to the gym, or jog for 30 minutes to see the benefits of moving more. Here are a few simple ways you can increase your activity this month to improve brain health and overall wellness.
- Plant and care for your own flower or veggie garden (it doesn’t have to be big).
- Get outdoors and play with your grandkids.
- Spend some time cleaning. It’s a great workout that includes stretching, walking, and lifting. Even washing dishes gets you moving.
- Take a walk with a loved one after dinner.
- Do some stretches, yoga, or other exercise moves during commercials while you watch television.
- Cook dinner instead of ordering out. Dicing, chopping, sautéing, and being up on your feet in the kitchen is an easy way to move a bit more.
- Set some sitting time goals. After 20 minutes of sitting, make sure you get up, move, and stretch for a few minutes.
- Don’t watch your dog exercises – join in and walk your dog and get some exercise and activity together.
- If you’re watching your grandchild play sports, walk up and down the sidelines to get some activity of your own.
- Do a few squats while you’re brushing your teeth in the morning and before bed.
You don’t have to join a sports team or spend long hours at the gym to boost your activity level. With a bit of planning, you can move more and enjoy all the great benefits of activity for both your body and brain.
How have you increased your activity for National Fitness Month? We’d love to hear your stories! And stay tuned next week as we dive into a new topic for June!