A healthy lifestyle is vital to help ensure that you grow fit and strong
Health experts suggest that there are two main things you should aim to do each day:
Eating a healthy diet
Everyone needs a healthy and balanced diet to help ensure your bones grow good and strong, and that your mind is active and creative.
A varied diet helps ensure that you get a good balance of the right nutrients.
Don’t forget about your 5 a Day and great snacks and drinks you can make with fruit and vegetables.
Taking regular exercise
Regular exercise is good for your body. It helps encourage healthy growth and makes you feel good too. It can also help you meet and make new friends.
Taking exercise is easy – when you ride your bike, play football with your mates or skip in the playground you may just think you’re having fun, but actually you’re helping make your body stronger and fitter!
Keeping active, whether it’s running, cycling or dancing, is very important in helping us stay fit and healthy. This type of aerobic exercise makes our hearts beat faster to pump blood around the body to all the muscles we’re using. We also breathe faster because we need more oxygen.
Your heart is a muscle, and it works hard all day pumping blood around your body. By doing exercise – although it may make you tired and sweaty, you help keep this vital muscle strong. And the more often you do exercise, the better your body can do its job!
How much exercise should we do?
The Government recommends that we should do at least 30 minutes moderate physical activity every day.
This doesn’t have to be boring though. As we said, playing football or ‘tag’ in the playground, or swinging on the monkey bars at school all count as physical activity that will help us stay fit.
Why exercise is cooler than TV
As well as making your heart healthy – which is a very important achievement in itself – there are also lots of other ways that exercise helps us.
Bones and Muscles – just as running around helps our heart become a stronger muscle, we are also strengthening all the other muscles we are using too. Doing a push-up will improve the muscles in our arms and running often will strengthen the muscles in our legs – all helping make our body work better.
And it’s not just the muscles that get stronger. Games that include jogging and climbing are especially good because they strengthen your bones too!
Get Flexible – certain activity helps make our body bend and stretch more. Being flexible is important because it increases our range of motion, which basically means we can move our arms and legs more without it hurting. Activities such as gymnastics, yoga and martial arts are great for making us more flexible.
Discover New Things
There’s also loads of great activities for you to explore, which you will never discover just sitting in front of your TV.
Here’s just a few examples from a very big list!
- Bike riding
- Martial Arts
- Dancing in the living room while listening to Fun Kids!
The list is endless! Just remember, anything that gets you moving around and breathing a bit harder is good!
Exercising Makes You Happier!
It’s always fun doing activities that you enjoy, whether that be swimming or playing ‘tag’ with friends. Also doing something often, such as playing tennis, is a great way to get really good and it is always fun to be good at something.
Exercise also just puts you in a better mood! When you exercise your brain releases a chemical called endorphins, which are a great thing that make you feel happier!
Finding a Sport or Activity
Your local council should have details about facilities, clubs and other initiatives in your area. Your local library should also be a good source of information.
Sport England operates the Active Places website which has lots of information on a wide range of sports facilities. The Active Places website allows you to search for facilities by area and by sport. It’s a good way to find things such as your nearest fitness centre, swimming pool or athletic track.
Before you start any new sport or activity, always remember to check if it’s ok with your mum or dad.