The four pillars: fit, healthy, active and energised

Firstly, boosting your energy levels is important to all three aspects of being healthy, fit and active. As most of us work these days, quite often we find that by mid-afternoon you start to nod off at your desk (if you are like me)! Not to worry, the fix is easy. Simply by standing up to allow the blood to pump to your brain can alleviate tiredness. If sat down for prolonged periods, try to take a brisk walk for a few minutes, this will also help your body become engaged and muscles that have been inactive to show signs of life. If you are lucky enough to have time for more than a quick brisk walk, try a simple but extremely effective circuit workout:  Count to 10 whilst skipping, do 8 push-ups, 12 crunches and 10 push-ups. Keep upping these numbers until you have been active for 15 minutes but be wary about overdoing it as you want to feel energised not exhausted!

Short bursts of exercise and activity can also lift your mood, boosting happiness and general wellbeing. Walking, jogging or biking for 30 minutes three times a week should increase your happiness – if you can commute to work these ways then why not try it? Working out with music and/or a friend will also make you feel better and improve your mood. Try jump squats for a quick mood and energy booster. You use your own body weight to carry these out, no machines, so will also help to improve your sense of self whilst costing absolutely nothing.

Essential to health and energy is relaxation. Chilling out after a long day at work, especially when you are feeling like your body is ready to roll into a ball and explode, is a must. Some exercises will help you with your breathing and relaxation, calming your body.  Yoga is great for chilling out! After about 20 minutes your stress and tension should start to decrease. Focus on those movements that lift the chest as this will give you the most stress relief, even just putting your arms over your head, looking upwards for a few seconds and breathing in deeply is a good start.

Sleeping soundly is an absolute must.  Any type of aerobic exercise is great for improving your length of sleep and will encourage your body to get 8 hours. Try to avoid exercise for up to three hours before you sleep and therefore you shouldn’t be carrying out any strenuous exercise after 8pm.  It is important to ensure that you give your body time to cool down after you exercise, a shower and stretch will help. Try lying on the floor with your knees bent and resting your calves on the sofa or something of a similar height. Drop your chin towards your chest placing your arms a few inches from your sides and close your eyes. Bliss.

Improving energy levels, health and general fitness doesn’t happen overnight. Taking these small steps, however, will help you get on your way.

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