After dinner walk? Whatever happened to those?
The simple act of walking seems to be disappearing. Even with the increase in health monitors and pedometers, the increase in walking is as short lived as the novelty of the latest fitness gadget. Eventually it just becomes an expensive watch or heart rate monitor. So how do you make sure your healthy habits stick?
They can’t just be something you do because you have a new gadget. You need to integrate a new attitude towards health, movement and productivity.
Should I Just Walk More?
Walking more is a great place to start, it definitely gets you moving more, will increase your heart rate and do wonders for your mental health. But there’s only so much of it you can add to your day. You may walk part or all of the way to work. Take the stairs instead of lifts and escalators. But where do you go from there? Unless you have several hours in your day to kill, then it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to add much more.
The concept of NEPA or Non Exercise Physical Activity looks at ways of increasing your physical activity without having to actually add a workout. Doing small activities throughout your day, which may not seem like much, all add up to a healthier self in the weeks, months and years to come. As these activities are so small, they’re easy to implement as habits without feeling like you’re doing much at all.
How Can You Increase NEPA?
A few ideas to increase your NEPA:
- Stand more throughout the day
- Walk to and from work
- Play more with your children
- Walk to the shops and carry your shopping home
- Clean the house and do the vacuuming
- Spend some time tending to the Garden
These are just simple ideas, but you get the picture. Most of these things won’t even seem like extra activity, it’ll just feel like you’re doing the chores, but all these chores add up. Add some extra movement to your day to find a healthier future.