Regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle can help improve self-confidence, increase energy levels and keep the brain and memory sharp, all of which can have a positive effect on how successful someone is at work.
Being healthy can also help reduce a person's risk of developing a disease such as type 2 diabetes or having heart problems, it can also improve mobility, stamina and help control body weight.
Benefits of Exercise
Exercise can also help your joints and general mobility, help you to sleep better, increase your energy levels and concentration and make you more productive in work. Let's have a look at these benefits in more detail:
Exercise burns calories which can help you to lose or maintain weight, or avoid excess weight gains. To help maintain a healthy weight you should combine some exercise with a healthy, balanced diet.
Combats health conditions and diseases
Regular physical activity can help you prevent or manage a wide range of health problems or concerns such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, obesity and depression.
Activity stimulates certain chemicals in your brain which can leave you feeling happier and more relaxed, which can help reduce anxiety. Regular exercise can also help you feel better about yourself, which in turn may lessen symptoms of depression. It can change the way you feel about your appearance, which may improve your confidence and self-esteem.
Exercise and physical activity deliver increased amounts of oxygen and nutrients to the tissues in your body; this helps your cardiovascular system (your heart and lungs) work more efficiently, meaning you have more spare energy to do things. This can mean you are less likely to get tired through the day and will still have energy to enjoy activities outside of work. Exercise can also improve your muscle strength, which can make it easier for you to carry out tasks at work, especially if your job involves any manual work.
Promotes better sleep
We have already explained that regular exercise can help increase your energy and help you function better throughout the day, but did you know it can also help you to fall asleep more easily and help you to stay asleep. Be careful though - exercise can energise you, so avoid this too close to bedtime or you may have trouble getting to sleep!
Mind, the mental health charity, have produced a leaflet about the positive effects of physical activity on mental health; you can download their PDF leaflet via the link below:
Mind - Physical Activity & Mental Health
How Much Exercise should I do?
Try to aim for about 30 minutes of physical activity every day. Exercise doesn't have to mean running marathons, cycling long distances or spending lots of money going to the gym - small changes such as taking the stairs instead of the lift, getting off the bus a stop earlier or going for a walk with friends, jumping on a trampoline, using a hula-hoop, joining your local Parkrun or dancing around the kitchen while you are making dinner all get you moving more!
Why not think of some fun ways to exercise, if you enjoy yourself while you are exercising then you are more likely to keep doing it. There are plenty of ideas online if you need some inspiration and YouTube has videos that cover just about every type of exercise.
Local Exercise Groups and Facilities
Jersey has some excellent fitness facilities that offer a diverse range of sports and exercise opportunities - right from beginner level to training for more elite athletes! As well as helping you commit to get fit, you can also make new friends and work together towards your fitness goals.
Jersey Sport's Directory has a huge number of clubs and groups listed. Click on the logo below to redirect to their website.
There are lots of very welcoming groups, activities and clubs you can join here on the Island, some of which are free or relatively low cost to attend. You could also join a sports facility such as one of the Active centres or a swimming pool. To find out more about what is on offer locally, click on the icons below.
The Breath of Fresh Air Run Club is free to join and they meet every Friday from 5.30pm - 6.30pm at La Fregate - everyone is welcome, including beginners. All you need is a pair of trainers, warm comfortable clothing and some water.
Check out their first Parkrun graduation video for some inspiration, just click on their logo below:
It takes time to get fit, but setting yourself small, achievable targets that you can stick to can help you reach your goal. Why not share these with your Coordinator and add them to your Action Plan?
Remember, if you have a short term illness, a health condition or a disability it is always advisable to check with your GP before you start an exercise programme.