Building activity into your day keeps your heart healthy, helps to maintain a healthy weight, reduces your risk of serious illness and strengthens muscles and bones. It can also reduce your stress levels and lift your mood.
To get these benefits adults needs to be active for at least 150 minutes each week, children and young people aged five to 16 need to be active for at least 60 minutes each day, and those under five need three hours of activity a day.
It's not just about feeling stronger, fitter and more energetic. You can also get a great sense of achievement if you decide to learn
or take up a new sport activity, for instance.
Being active means getting your heart rate up, feeling warmer (perhaps even breaking into a light sweat) and making your lungs work harder.
And being active can and should be fun. If we don't enjoy it, we won't keep it up. Walking, bowling, roller skating, swimming, cycling and dancing are all great ways to be active.
Get active for free
Activity doesn't always have to cost you money. There are many fun, easy ways you can get more active for free.
- Join a walk leader in one of our parks
- Turn up and tone up at an Our Park fitness session in the borough
- Walk, jog or run in free weekly 5km timed circuits with Gladstone park run
- Swap the living room for the garden. Gardening is a great way to be active and get outdoors -you could even have fun growing your own veggies too!
- Go for it when you do the housework! Even doing the housework counts as being active
- Play basketball or football on one of the many multi-use games areas
- Go for longer walks with the dog, or go twice a day - you'll both benefit!
- Walk or cycle instead of driving or taking public transport
- Park further away from the shops and walk, or get off the bus one stop early
- Take the stairs wherever you can
- Clean the car by hand using a sponge rather than taking it to the car wash. Good for you and your wallet and you might even get the kids to help!
Don't worry, you don't have to do it all at once. As long as you get your heart rate up for 10 minutes or more, it will count to your 150 active minutes a week. Just 30 minutes a day will keep you on target.