This article is written in collaboration with Naluri

“I am too busy to go to the gym”, “the fee is too expensive”, “I feel intimidated by other people who are already fit”.

Have you ever had these thoughts every time you think of going to the gym? Exercising at the gym is a great way to adhere to a routine and be more disciplined with your exercise plans. But there are also many other options to exercise that is cost effective. Here are some suggestions and its benefits:

1. Be on your feet more

Studies have found that being on your feet more has tremendous health benefits. Those who spent more time standing and moving recorded lower levels of blood sugar and cholesterol. Other benefits of taking more steps during the day include reductions in body-mass index and waist circumference.

This practice may be succinctly summarised as to “stand up, sit less and move more”. For example, you may choose to take the stairs instead of taking the lift or stand up while talking on the phone, have stand-up meetings and park your car a few meters away from the entrance door.

2. When it is too hot, sweat it out indoor

Ping pong, badminton, basketball, swimming and all the indoor games can be played together with your friends. There are many game options that are fun, fast, will not bore you and will also help to build on your social skills.

Recent studies found that indoor rock climbing is associated with a reduction of depression and anxiety. It also helps to improve mindfulness while building on self-efficacy. There have been few psychiatric institutions in Germany that uses this method as a treatment method for depression and anxiety.  

3. Create your own aerobic workouts and boot camps

Go to an open space, field or playground near your residential area with a group of friend to meet up and move to the beat. Set up a course run in the field and invite your friends to join in the fun. Engage in cardiovascular movements as its more fun and bearable when you do it together!

4. Sightseeing around town or even in a shopping mall!

There are many sightseeing options to be explored in town that may be unknown to you. Try to visit the art gallery, museums and historical sites. Become a tourist in your own town and explore!

Prefer going to the mall instead? Fret not, research done on the elderly found a significant improvement in physical activity behaviour and fitness on those who participated in a mall walking program. Make use of the beautiful malls in your neighbourhood. Enjoy the view and comfy environment to walk around. With appropriate clothes and walking shoes, you are good to go!

5. Take a hike

Go hiking with a group of friends. There are a number of hills that you may go to for hiking activities. There are also a few places where you may go for cycling activities. If you didn’t have a bike, try to choose places with bicycles rental service nearby. 

6. Jog not just to catch your breath, also to catch up with your friends

Public parks can be a great venue for you to jog around. Put on your running shoes/sneakers and you are all set. Use this opportunity to meet with friends and chat with them as you jog. Pay attention to your breathing to avoid being out of breath. Having company will surely make the jog more meaningful.

7. Turn daily chores into workouts

A study found that performing 30 minutes of any kind of physical activity five days a week could reduce your risk of death from any cause by 28% and reduce your rate of heart disease by 20%. This includes your household tasks and gardening. Hence, move around the house more, enjoy the daily chores you are doing as it may help you to become healthier!

There are many ways to be fit and lead a healthy lifestyle. Start with something small and doable while making space for the people you care about to make it even more enjoyable.  

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Naluri – Pioneering next generation digital therapeutics combining behavioural science, data science and digital design to build the mental resilience needed to achieve your goals and overcome life’s challenges that stand in your way.

Sources
Aina Nur Azmi Clinical Psychology
Aina is a clinical psychologist and health coach at Naluri, and has more than 6 years practicing experience as a clinical psychologist in both government ...
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Aina Nur Azmi Clinical Psychology
Aina is a clinical psychologist and health coach at Naluri, and has more than 6 years practicing experience as a clinical psychologist in both government and private sectors. She obtained her Psychology degree from University of East London and Masters degree in Clinical Psychology from HELP University, Malaysia.
Aina is experienced in self-confidence building, self-care and anger management, where she handles clients with different concerns ranging from school refusal, family issue, self-confidence issues and grief. She is passionate in promoting good mental health through multiple mediums, including talks and lectures.
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