Move It Monday – February is Heart Month

From our friends at the Monday Campaigns:

Your heart is a muscle, and just like your biceps and quadriceps, it too benefits from a weekly workout. Because when your heart doesn’t get the care and attention it requires, problems can develop. So how much exercise do you need to help your heart thrive? Not much!

Find out more.

Move It Monday! The Benefits of a Home Workout

From our friends at The Monday Campaigns:

Once you start working out from home, you may never want to return to the gym again. Think about it: there’s no need to get in a cold car, change into gym clothes, wait for machines, or breathe in all those curious aromas.

This Monday, we’re breaking down all the benefits of a home workout, so that you can jump-start your physical activity regimen and meet your fitness goals without having to step foot in a gym.

Learn more about the benefits of a home workout and get started today.

Warm Up With a Foam Roller

At first glance, a foam roller seems like a low-tech piece of fitness equipment, but this simple, tube of compressed foam is high value. When used correctly, a foam roller can help reduce muscle soreness, increase joint range of motion, release muscle knots, aid in the management of fibromyalgia, and even lessen feelings of fatigue and sadness.

Try out these three basic foam roller exercises.

Move It Monday: Strength Training with What You Have on Hand

If you’re just starting with a new strength-training regimen or trying to maintain a healthy weight, the last thing you want to think about is spending money on heavy weights and elaborate machinery. Exercise equipment can be expensive, cumbersome, and bulky, which is why it often ends up covered in cobwebs rather than sweat. But you don’t need a treadmill, weights, or a squat rack to build muscle at home; with a little creativity, you can fashion a number of household items into fitness gear.

Read more here.

Boost Your Mood with a COVID-friendly Walk

From our friends at MoveItMonday:

Even as COVID-19 requires us to take extra precautions when socializing with family, friends, and colleagues, you still have plenty of options when it comes to securing a walking partner. Walking is a key component of physical activity for all ages and abilities; and as many of us are spending more time indoors, a daily walk can be the perfect opportunity to get up from your chair and take in some fresh air.

Check out our tips for enjoying a safe partner walk.

Dance Your Way to Better Fitness

From our friends at #MoveItMonday:

We dance to celebrate; we dance to express ourselves; but we can also dance to improve our conditioning and to get into better shape. Dancing — whether it be hip-hop, tango, or jazz —is an excellent form of aerobic exercise that’s easy to do and accessible to all ages, abilities, and fitness levels. Even the US Department of Health and Human Services is on board, citing dancing as a useful way to help meet the physical activity guidelines for aerobic activity.

Plus, if you work on your skills, you’ll be able to impress friends and family at the next shindig. 

Read more here.

Not sure where to start? Try this Dance Workout for Dummies on YouTube.

Biking Benefits the Environment

Biking not only benefits your health, but it also benefits the environment. Biking instead of using a car can be a useful step in reducing your carbon footprint and preserving the environment.

Transportation accounts for more than half of the carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides emitted into the air, with the average U.S. car emitting a pound of carbon dioxide per mile from burning fuel. By opting to bike, you are saving fossil fuel and reducing the number of cars on the road. Fewer cars relieves congestion and traffic and of a need for new parking lots and roadways, and more potential locations for public green spaces. Bicycles can use existing infrastructure, without demanding too much in terms of road construction and parking spaces. Bikes are also quiet, which means no honking or obnoxious noise pollution.

Third, biking around our neighborhoods gives us a greater appreciation for the surrounding natural beauty. By choosing to Move It Monday by biking, you are embracing the outdoors, appreciating the environment, all the while bettering your own health.

Cycle Smart to Stay Safe

Basic Cycling Guidelines to Ensure You Stay Safe

Zipping through city streets or country roads on your bike can be an exhilarating workout, but any cyclist, no matter their skill level and comfort, should adhere to some basic biking safety protocols.

The most important safety requirement is wearing a helmet that fits your head properly. Helmet sizes differ based on manufacturer, so the only real way to know how it fits is to put it on and adjust the straps. You also want to make sure the bike you’re riding is the right size with functioning. Before your ride, make sure your shoe laces are tucked securely into your pant legs so that they don’t get tangled in the bike chain. It also helps to plan your route ahead of time. If driving on the road, choose areas with less traffic and slower speed limits; for leisurely rides, try to stick to a bike path.

You also want to do your best to avoid crashes; because, regardless of who is responsible, if a cyclist falls or collides with another vehicle, they are often the one who suffers with the physical consequences. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, most bicyclist deaths occur between 6:00 pm and 9:00 pm in urban areas, so try to avoid riding during these times of day when visibility is limited. If you do decide to ride during dusk or the evening, use reflective gear and clothing as well as a flashing front and rear light.   

 Bicycles on the roadway have the same rights and responsibilities as motorized vehicles. Riding defensively is the best way to avoid an accident. Drive with the flow of traffic, obey street signs, signals, and road markings, and always assume that the other person or vehicle doesn’t see you. When biking, riders should be as predictable as possible, using hand signals and following the other rules of the road.

These basic guidelines will help ensure your ride is a safe success.