Written by the Weight-control Information Network
May is the National Physical Fitness and Sports Month! Celebrate by building habits to meet the Physical Activity Guidelines—or, if you have these habits, by keeping up the good work. The warmer, sunnier weather of spring may make it easier to fit activity into your day and try new kinds of exercise.
The Weight-control Information Network (WIN) offers ideas to help people of all ages start physical activity and make it part of their routine. Here are some tips for adults:
- Mix it up. Try a new activity each day like dancing or planting a garden to find out what you enjoy most.
- Make it social. Meet a friend for workouts, or train together for a charity event. Join a class or sports league where people count on you to show up.
- Move more with your kids. No matter what age your kids are, find an activity you can do together. Dance to music, take a walk, run around the park, or play basketball or soccer.
- Fit it in. Add a daily 15-minute walk during your lunch break or after dinner. If your schedule allows and you can do so safely near home or work, taking a walk may help you clear your head.
- Don’t break the bank. If you’re on a budget, try activities that don’t require special gear. Walking requires a pair of sturdy shoes. To dance, just turn on some music.
Here are some ideas to help teens get and stay active:
- Get outside. Enjoy outdoor physical activity, such as jumping rope, playing Frisbee or flag football, or skateboarding.
- Join in. Join a school sports or dance team. Jump into a neighborhood pickup game of basketball or softball.
- Pitch in. Help keep your community’s sidewalks, sports fields, parks, and athletic centers clean and usable.
- Be active with friends. Choose group activities such as sports, active games, or walking around a public park.
- Sit less. Watching TV, gaming, and surfing the web are fun but inactive, so spend less time in front of the screen.
Find more tips and information in WIN’s Tips to Help You Get Active and, for teens, the tip sheet Get Moving! Tips to Help You Get Active offers tips to help readers become more physically active, overcome barriers to activity, and stay motivated. Get Moving! suggests ways teens can get and stay active both indoors and outdoors. It is based on the longer booklet Take Charge of Your Health: A Guide for Teenagers, which is available in English and Spanish.
Check out healthfinder.gov’s page on National Physical Fitness and Sports Month for reasons to be active, ideas for helping others get more exercise, and sample messages to send through email or social media and post to your blog or other website.
Have you tried a fun new kind of exercise this spring—something you’ve never done before? What did you do?