Submitted by UnitedHealthcare of Washington.
With summer’s arrival and the days getting warmer and longer, some people in Washington may be rededicating themselves to getting outside and focusing on their fitness. Whether you are ready to return to public fitness centers or are pursuing an at-home workout routine, the same priorities may remain key: daily exercise, proper nutrition and sufficient sleep.
To help with those efforts, here are three strategies to consider to make health a priority this summer and year-round.
Round Out Your Home Workout Routine. A recent study found that 87% of people consider their at-home exercise routines to be effective. To make the most of your at-home exercise efforts, add resistance bands, which are an inexpensive, space-saving option. A pair of adjustable-weight dumbbells may offer versatility and scalable resistance. Finally, heart rate monitors or activity trackers may help you evaluate performance during individual workouts and over time.
Make Movement a Priority. Moving more and sitting less may help boost the immune system, ease joint pain, and curb cravings for high-sugar foods. Try for short walks frequently throughout the day, aiming for six separate “mini-walks” of at least 300 to 500 steps. For cardiovascular fitness, aim for one 30-minute “brisk walk” of at least 2,000 to 3,000 steps each day. In total, try for 8,000 to 10,000 aggregate steps per day.
Earn Incentives. A majority of U.S. employers offer well-being programs, many of which include financial rewards for healthy activities such as walking, going to the gym or meeting certain health benchmarks (e.g., cholesterol levels, body mass index or non-nicotine use). Importantly, some health plans offer access to wearable devices that may enable people to earn more than $1,000 per year in financial incentives for meeting certain daily activity goals.
If you need external motivation, this summer you can go to UHCStepUp.com and sign the pledge to make health a priority. Following these tips may help you swing into summer and make health a priority, while encouraging healthy habits that may eventually translate to meaningful improvements.