It’s Day 2 of the current ‘Boost Your Mood’ Tenner Week budgeting challenge, and today’s activity is called Keep on moving. Yes, it’s time for a fitness moment.
Exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, and it brings many benefits. Most importantly for this particular challenge, getting moving has a scientifically-proven mood boosting effect for most people.
It also helps us to feel more at home in our own bodies, which tends to be a confidence booster. Plus, many types of exercise get you out of the house, enjoying daylight or flowers and trees, or joining in with activities with other people.
Movement can even be a form of meditation – for example, you could try mindfully focusing on the way your feet feel during every step of a walk, or try to notice interesting design or architecture or signs of nature’s changing seasons as you go by.
Boost Your Mood Challenge: Today’s ‘Keep on moving’ activity
Today’s free or low cost activity is to get some exercise for at least 20 minutes. You can do more if you want to, depending on your fitness level or preference.
Here are a few examples for exercise on a budget:
- A walk, at any pace you prefer
- Gym exercises or class, if you already have a membership
- Dancing, or dance class
- Yoga class, online tutorial, or self-guided practice
- Cycling or skating
- Swimming, if you have membership or a cheap pool nearby
- Jogging or running (if you already have some experience)
- Home exercise equipment
- Dog walking (offer to walk a neighbour’s dog if you don’t have one)
- Local outdoor gym trail or green gym
- A football kickabout or 5-a-side in a local park
- Toning exercises or weight lifting / strength training
- Hula hooping, skipping, roller skating, roller blading, etc
That’s not even a full list of everything that’s on offer, and there’s something out there for just about everyone.
Some ‘Keep on moving’ inspiration
Pick something you’re likely to enjoy. Many of us have negative associations with exercise, such as having a boring time sweating it out at the gym or memories of an unpleasant sports teacher at school, but it doesn’t have to be like that.
It doesn’t need to be formal, or, say, a competitive sport if those don’t appeal to you. You don’t need to strive for an unrealistic physique either; remember it’s about caring for your body and not punishing it.
Make it your thing, your way. Try dancing to your favourite music in your kitchen, have a walk around an interesting or attractive nearby place, or take a class with fun people in it.
Alternatively, you might prefer to cheer more mundane fitness activities up by listening to a good music playlist or your favourite podcast, or even a racy audiobook. Or you could watch an interesting TV show while your eyeline is relatively static, such as on an exercise bike or elliptical trainer.
General health and re-starting exercise
If you haven’t exercised in a long time, or you have health problems then please get some advice from your GP or other healthcare before getting started. Safety first. Go for something gentle and light to begin with, and remember to warm up and warm down properly.
We all have different levels of mobility, but most of us can manage some level of activity. For example, the NHS has some handy exercise advice for wheelchair users.
If you’re feeling low at the moment, MIND charity has some good information about the benefits of physical activity, plus several other helpful fitness and general resources.
There’s one more important point to add: life gets in the way sometimes. If you don’t have time to do 30 minutes or more exercise today, remember that the Tenner Week daily activities are designed to fit together easily.
If you can’t carry out this Day 2 activity today, it’s fine to catch up with it at the weekend if you have more time then. Schedule something in and go for it.
More useful resources
- The Tenner Week Challenge rules
- 12 tips for a successful Tenner Week
- The ‘Boost Your Mood’ Tenner Week schedule
I’m going to watch a new TV show from our folding exercise bike this evening (it’s free, and I’m really looking forward to catching up with the latest episode).
What are you going to do? A walk, a bike ride, a swim, the gym, a class, or something else?
By the way, if you’d like a free printable spending diary to give your Tenner Week budgeting challenge an even bigger boost, just fill in the form below.