By Michelle Lisee, EmblemHealth: HealthFitness Program Manager
There are so many unique ways to add more physical activity to your routine — workouts that don’t include a treadmill. The smallest steps can lead to big strides toward improving your health, and aside from reaching a healthy weight and body mass index (BMI), there are many benefits to being physically active:
- Reduced blood pressure
- Decreased cholesterol
- Reduced risk for heart disease
- Decreased potential for depression
- More restful sleep
- Reduced body fat
- Stronger muscles, bones and joints
We’re not all cut from the same mold. While some of us actually like lifting weights and running, others need to find different ways to burn calories. Here are a few fun ideas to get your blood pumping:
- Dance class. Studios and gyms offer a wide variety of dance classes: salsa, hip-hop and even Zumba. These classes are entertaining, fun and can be a great way to meet people.
- Team sports. Soccer, basketball, softball, flag football and kickball leagues are all over the city. Organizations like ZogSports, United Sports League, NY Social Sports Club and many others have leagues year round.
- Mountain climbing. If you live in New York City, there are plenty of indoor rock-climbing facilities, including Chelsea Piers or Brooklyn Boulders. There are even rocks in Central Park that you can climb.
- Bicycle riding. You’ll discover your sense of adventure if you take your bike outside. A ride to work or just cruising around the park can burn calories and put a smile on your face.
- Boot camp. These high-intensity workouts will test your will along with your conditioning — obstacle courses, push-ups, sit-ups and running! Local gyms have classes and you can find deals on Groupon.
- Boxing. Running, jumping rope, heavy bag and speed bag, all in the same workout. Many fitness clubs offer boxing classes. Boxing not only helps you break a sweat, but helps you build up your confidence.
- Triathlons. Swimming, running and cycling seems like something you can only do in the summer. However, there are a number of fitness clubs in the city (YMCA, NYC Parks, etc.) that have pools, allowing you to swim year round.
Try something new today and tell us in the comment box how you like to work out! Every workout is a small step towards staying healthy, getting well and living better.