The four pillars: Fit, healthy, active and energised

Fit. Healthy. Active. Energised. Four words. Four fundamental pillars underpinning everything we do at Vivi. Achieving these doesn’t happen overnight, however. But here are some small steps you can take immediately to start making a difference.

Fit. Healthy. Active. Energised.

Firstly, boosting your energy levels is important to all three aspects of being healthy, fit and active. As those who work will know, quite often you find that by mid-afternoon you start to feel lethargic and productivity drops – particularly if you are working from home. Fortunately, a fix is relatively simple.

Physical inactivity is a killer. Simply standing up to allow the blood to pump to your brain can alleviate tiredness. If sitting 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 walk, try a simple but extremely effective circuit workout: 10 squats, 10 pushups, 10 crunches, 30 seconds of plank, 30 seconds of high knees. 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 – especially if you are otherwise stuck inside all day. Working out with music and/or a friend will also make you feel better and improve your mood. For a more intense workout, try jump squats or burpees for a quick mood and energy booster. You use your own bodyweight to carry these out, no machines required, 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 this. After about 20 minutes, you’ll feel your stress and tension starting to decrease. Focus on movements that lift your 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. Deep breathing is surprisingly effective for relaxing yourself.

Lastly, 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 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. Make sure sleeping times are structured into your day/night. Set a routine and stick to it, that way your body learns when to be awake and when to start shutting down for sleep.

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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