Tips to get active if you are unfit

Don't worry, you can start with small chunks of exercise, you do not have to do it all in one go. The important thing is that you start slowly and build up to avoid hurting yourself. You need to take activity that makes your heart beat faster, makes you slightly short of breath, warm and sweaty. If you are not able to hold a conversation with someone at the same time, you are probably working too hard.

As long as you are getting your heart rate up for 10 minutes or more, it will count towards your 150 active minutes a week as recommended by the Chief Medical Officer. Just 20 or 30 minutes a day will keep you on target.

Have you thought about:

  • Go for it when you do the housework. Using the smallest attachment when you do the vacuuming and plenty of elbow grease when you clean the windows means you’ll work up a sweat
  • Pet-tastic! Surprise the dog by taking it for a walk twice a day or a much longer walk than usual – you will both benefit
  • Valet value: clean the car by hand yourself using a bucket and sponge, rather than taking it to the car wash. Good for you and your wallet and you could even get the kids to help.
  • Get on two feet: try to walk or cycle if you can, instead of driving or taking public transport. Wandsworth Council run free volunteer led walks.
  • Think about joining a local exercise class. Wandsworth Council run the Active Lifestyles Programme which has low cost community exercise classes. 

For more advice and support on being more active, please visit Public Health England's One You website.