March 4, 2014 9.22 am This story is over 92 months old

Making the right move with physical activity

Getting fit: Fiona Roche from the City Council’s Healthy Lifestyles Team explains how exercise benefits everyone.

Physical activity can benefit many health conditions. It can help boost self confidence, self esteem, mood, energy, reduce weight and overall make you feel better about yourself. It can have a positive impact on all aspects of life, so it is very worthwhile introducing some activity of your lifestyle.

It is medically proven to lower the risk of type two diabetes, colon cancer, osteoarthritis, hip fractures, coronary heart disease, stroke, falls, depression, dementia and in general lower risk of early death.

Physical activity is the medicine that should be prescribed to everybody, as it’s the cure we have been waiting for. However, people do not realise what a difference it can make to their health, so now is the time to spread the word. It’s free, easy to undertake and has an immediate effect, so what are you waiting for?

The recommended amount of physical activity to stay healthy is at least 150 minutes (so two hours and 30 minutes) of moderate to intensive aerobic activity a week, with muscle-strengthening activities on two or more days a week that work all major muscle groups — the legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulder and arms.

Moderate intensity activity means working hard enough to raise your heart rate and break a sweat. If you can still talk but can’t sing the words of a song you are working at the right intensity.

If you’d like to get started, but are not sure where to start, the City of Lincoln Council Healthy Lifestyles Team are available to help. Our scheme helps to build a programme of exercise that suits the needs of the individual, taking into consideration health conditions.

You’ll meet a physical activity officer and together you’ll agree a 12 week programme. There are a variety of options which include walks, a wide variety of classes, the gym and swimming. The scheme is free for the first twelve weeks; costs will apply after this, but will be discussed at the appointment.

We will be there every step of the way to give all the support you need and also guide you to the options that suit you best. You need to visit your doctor or nurse and ask to be referred to the scheme.

If you’re interested in becoming more active and want further information, please contact the Healthy Lifestyles Team on 015222 873581, email [email protected] or visit our website.

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Fiona is a Physical Activity Officer for the City of Lincoln Council. Her role is to coordinate the Physical Activity Referral Programme.