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The “ber” months are notoriously gloomy, with the sun setting before the workday is even over. We can all agree that these conditions are not particularly motivating. But there’s an excellent remedy for the seasonal drop in energy: get moving! Here’s how you can stay active every day. With these tips, you’ll be smiling in no time!

We can’t stress this enough: 30 minutes of moderate physical activity each day is linked to various health benefits (better sleep, better weight management, better cardiovascular health, etc.). “Moderate activity” refers to any aerobic activity that increases your heart rate, such as speed walking, skating, or bike riding.

Stay mobile

Get up at least five minutes each hour on the hour throughout the day. You can use this short break to prepare a warm cup of tea, make a call while standing or, if you’re working from home, chop a few veggies for dinner. You can even take this time to exercise your legs (think squats) or stretch your neck, back, legs, forearms, and wrists to help you loosen up.

Need examples? Raise your shoulders and hold the position for 3 seconds, and release slowly. Repeat two or three times. This helps release tension in the neck and shoulders.

On your chair, with your feet firmly flat on the ground, raise your arms and intertwine your fingers, keeping your arms straight. Push upwards and hold the position a few seconds, then lean slightly to the left, and then to the right. Repeat the exercise, this time pushing back instead . . . you’re welcome! You can also push your hands frontward for a good stretch of the shoulder blades and chest.

Chair yoga offers a variety of exercises and stretches you can do throughout the day; look online for endless examples you’re sure to love.

Stay Zen!

To refuel and reduce stress, just breathe (no, really!). Inhale slowly through your nose, filling your stomach with air. Next, hold your breath for 5 seconds, and exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat 10 times.

Get the heart pumping

Get the heart pumping
You’ve probably heard this before, but taking the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator is one of the simplest, most effective ways to increase your heart rate. Another classic that works just as well: get off one metro station or bus stop early and walk to your destination,At lunchtime, take advantage of the midday sun to take a 15-minute walk to pick up food . . . or to digest after eating. Keep up the pace to get the heart pumping. This is certainly more enjoyable than walking at night, in the dark, when the temperatures drop.

After dinner, it’s time to play with the kids! Join them for some outdoor fun (weather permitting), such as a game of ball hockey or tag. Otherwise, there are plenty of videogames that can get you moving, such as dance ones.

Still have fuel in the tank once the lunches are made? Why not take part in a YouTube training session? There’s a ton of free ones of all types on the platform, some short, some long, to be done with or without equipment. Simply look up “cardio workout” or “cardio dance” for some fun discoveries.

Household chores also count!

Vacuuming, scrubbing the tub and shower, shovelling the walkway, etc.: all these chores require energy! You can even put your earphones on and listen to music while you’re at it; it will help keep you going!

Technology that gets you moving

Certain apps and tech gadgets (like the Apple Watch) allow you to share your activities with loved ones and participate in some friendly challenges. It’s a real ego booster and helps give you that extra push!