This year’s National Fitness Day on 22nd September 2020, is a chance to highlight the role physical activity plays across the UK, helping us raise awareness of its importance in helping us lead healthier and active lifestyles.
Having been faced with the challenges and threat of a global pandemic for over 6 months now, investing in health and fitness has never been so important.
The definition of fitness is:
The condition of being physically fit and healthy. (With the definition of fit being in good health, especially because of regular physical exercise.)
Fitness means so many things to so many different people. What does it mean to you?
- Playing with my grandchildren.
- Being able to walk the dog every day.
- Lessening the feeling of ageing.
- Having fun and being sociable.
- A way to help keep me feeling sane.
- Being able to run for the bus.
- Getting a personal best on a deadlift at the gym.
- Paddle boarding at the weekend in the sunshine.
- Mowing the lawn and keeping on top of the weeding.
These are just some but the message is – it doesn’t have to be running a marathon, it doesn’t have to mean going to the gym 5 days a week!
As part of National Fitness Day, UK Active will be running a social media campaign – #Fitness2Me
#Fitness2Me aims to celebrate what fitness means to people, promoting that keeping physically active means something different to us all.
UK Active want to make #Fitness2Me the biggest movement in breaking down the barriers that stop people being active, showing that fitness is for everyone!
They hope that by encouraging people from all walks of life, activity levels, and interests to share what fitness means to them, it will inspire others to live healthier and happier lives through being active.
So if it is getting fit, getting happy, playing with grandkids, or connecting with pets, whatever it means to you we want to hear about it!
- Simply grab a piece of paper and scribble down what Fitness Means 2 You
- Then take a photo or capture a 60 second video to share with us on social media
- Don’t forget to add #Fitness2Me and #FitnessDay and tag us via @FitnessDayUK
A major issue that people face when trying to increase activity levels, is overcoming perceived or actual barriers.
Here are some suggestions for overcoming barriers to physical activity.
|Suggestions for Overcoming Physical Activity Barriers|
|Lack of time||Identify available time slots. Monitor your daily activities for one week. Identify at least three 30-minute time slots you could use for physical activity.|
|Add physical activity to your daily routine. For example, walk or ride your bike to work or shopping, organise school activities around physical activity, walk the dog, exercise while you watch TV, park farther away from your destination, etc.|
|Select activities requiring minimal time, such as walking, jogging, or stairclimbing.|
|Social influence||Explain your interest in physical activity to friends and family. Ask them to support your efforts.|
|Invite friends and family members to exercise with you. Plan social activities involving exercise, like family walks or walk to a coffee shop with a friend.|
|Develop new friendships with physically active people. Join a group, such as a walking club.|
|Lack of energy||Schedule physical activity for times in the day or week when you feel most energetic naturally.|
|Convince yourself that if you give it a chance, physical activity will increase your energy level; then, try it.|
|Lack of motivation||Plan ahead. Make physical activity a regular part of your daily or weekly schedule and write it on your calendar.|
|Invite a friend to exercise with you on a regular basis and write it on both your calendars.|
|Join an exercise group or class.|
|Fear of injury||Learn how to warm up and cool down to prevent injury.|
|Learn how to exercise appropriately considering your age, fitness level, skill level, and health status.|
|Make sure you get any injuries checked out, so you have confidence to exercise without fear.|
|Lack of skill||Select activities requiring no new skills, such as walking, climbing stairs, or jogging.|
|Take a class to develop new skills.|
|Lack of resources||Select activities that require minimal facilities or equipment, such as walking, jogging, skipping, or free online classes.|
|Identify inexpensive, convenient resources available in your community Park Run, Eastleigh Borough Council Activities, Health walks etc.|
|Weather conditions||Develop a set of regular activities that are always available regardless of weather (indoor cycling, free online classes, indoor swimming, stair climbing, skipping, dancing, yoga, etc.)|
|Travel||Put a skipping rope in your suitcase and skip.|
|Walk the halls and climb the stairs in hotels.|
|Stay in places with swimming pools or exercise facilities.|
|Join a nationwide gym.|
|Visit the local shopping centre and walk for half an hour or more.|
|Bring your mp3 player your favorite aerobic exercise music.|
|Family obligations||Trade babysitting time with a friend, neighbour, or family member who also has small children.|
|Exercise with the kids-go for a walk together, play tag or other running games, do an aerobic dance or exercise video for kids (there are several online) and exercise together. You can spend time together and still get your exercise.|
|True skipping, ride a stationary bicycle, or use other home gymnasium equipment while the kids are busy playing or sleeping.|
|Try to exercise when the kids are not around (e.g., during school hours or their nap time).|
|Retirement years||Look upon your retirement as an opportunity to become more active instead of less. Spend more time gardening, walking the dog, and playing with your grandchildren. Children with short legs and grandparents with slower gaits are often great walking partners.|
|Learn a new skill you’ve always been interested in, such as ballroom dancing, line dancing, or swimming.|
|Now that you have the time, make regular physical activity a part of every day. Go for a walk every morning or every evening before dinner. Treat yourself to an exercycle and ride every day while reading a favorite book or magazine.|