I’ve written and posted a lot of exercise tips through our time in lockdown. Some of you may have taken full advantage of these and some of you may still be lacking that ‘exercise’ motivation. Because of this I have put together these 5 things which will help you increase your non-exercise activity thermogenisis (NEAT), and get you to your 10,000 steps without you having to leave your house. Using one of more of these tips will increase your daily calorie burn and help you stay more active without ‘exercising’ in the way you may traditionally think about it.
On a quick note about NEAT, this encompasses all your daily movement which is based outside of a structured workout. It includes everything from walking to you scratching your nose. NEAT makes up the majority of your daily calorie expenditure and could be anywhere between 1000 and 3000 calories. When you consider that a well structured fat loss workout could burn up to 650 calories you can see that it is still only a portion of what your non-exercise activity will burn. Obviously this is only the case if you ensure that you use the steps below and this does not mean that workouts are not a valuable tool.
Here are my top 5 ideas that you can use:
1. Skipping. This is the most effective, short, aerobic workout that can be done on one spot. Research also shows that skipping can burn more calories than running. Rather than using this as one long bout of exercise I like to recommend short, 2 minute skipping breaks every hour so that it’s broken up into smaller, easily manageable chunks.
2. Work upstairs. Doing it this way means that every time you need a tea break, more water or even lunch, you have to walk up and down stairs. Probably the easiest one of these to do.
3. Walk and talk. This one comes easy to me as I like to wander. Every time you take a phone call get up and out of your chair. Walk and talk, before you know it you’ll have done 10 laps of the living room and your step count will rocket whilst you’re still working.
4. Tea-break better. Make the most of the time you have whilst you wait for the kettle to boil. Whether it’s a morning cup of tea or a pre workout coffee, spend the few minutes you have spare to either stretch or drop into a few reverse lunges. If you choose to use this time to stretch, I suggest you focus on the quads, hip flexors and calf muscles. These muscle groups tend to cause us the most issues in daily life when we spend more time sitting.
5. Do it yourself. For those who have more time during the week or at the weekend, get stuck into some DIY. Whether this be inside the house or in the garden, projects like these can be challenging but fulfilling at the same time – as well as increasing your NEAT.
So there you have it, 5 of the easiest ways you can drastically increase your step count without doing a workout and without leaving your own home.
Thanks for reading!