Incidental Exercise: Are You Getting Enough?

Everyone knows the benefits of exercise,  we really hope that you are including exercise and activity into each and every day. Hopefully because you receive the Optimum newsletter, this means that you are doing something about it.

Did you know that you burn through between 400-700 calories when you do a hard workout with your trainer or go to a Boot Camp class. This is a good amount of calories to burn on top of your current metabolism. But what calories are you burning on the days that you don’t have any organized exercise?

Telling yourself “I need a rest day” is not an excuse to sit around and do nothing, this is where incidental exercise comes in.

Incidental exercise is about getting your heart rate up and burning extra calories whilst doing everyday tasks throughout each day. Quite often we overlook or don’t think about how many extra calories we can burn through incidental exercise. If you lay around the house or sit at your desk all day you are virtually doing no incidental exercise but if you structure activity into your daily routine you can quite often burn the equivalent of a full hour hard workout (400-700 calories) throughout your day by adding each individual activity together bit by bit throughout the day.

How can you bring incidental exercise into each and every day?

• Park further away from the shopping centre. This will encourage you to walk further and have to carry your shopping to your car!

• Walk to the shops or walk your kids to school rather than drive.

• Using a basket at the shops instead of a trolley- Improve that grip  and arm strength

• Getting off the bus 2 stops before your normal stop- Again, increase your cardiovascular endurance through walking

• Taking the stairs, not the lift- Getting those legs pumping and heart rate elevated

• Playing with the kids, not just watching them- Ever tried to keep up with a toddler?

• Doing the gardening you have been putting off- A whole body workout, what is not to love?

• Cleaning those windows- Tough on the arms, back and legs.

All of the things listed above need no equipment and are easy to do. Change your attitude towards incidental exercise and do this on top of your structured workout sessions it will be amazing how much extra calories and therefore body fat you will burn each year.

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