It’s not always easy for NHS workers to lead a healthy lifestyle.
Long, unsocial hours and stress at work can have a detrimental effect on NHS workers’ health and wellbeing. And let’s be honest, it can be very hard to say no to that extra biscuit at work, and even harder to motivate yourself to exercise after a long shift.
This week is National Obesity Awareness Week (NOAW). Obesity is an ongoing issue in many countries, including the UK. Unhealthy eating choices and a lack of exercise are largely to blame. NOAW aims to raise awareness and to tackle the issue, helping people to live healthier lives.
According to the State of the National Waistline Report 2015, only 56% of adults meet recommendations for levels of physical activity and 28.5% of adults don’t achieve 30 minutes of physical activity per week.
Exercise isn’t just great for your body, it’s also good for your mind. It can reduce the effects of stress, fight depression and anxiety, boost brain-building hormones and spur brain growth.
Combine that with healthy eating and you’re on the right path for a healthy 2016!
Here are 5 steps NHS workers can take to make this year a healthy one.
1. Join a gym
Now is a great time to join a gym and kick-start a healthier you. Getting into a routine at the gym and finding a workout plan that you enjoy can become very enjoyable. You can take things at your own pace and it can be very satisfying when you start to see the results of your hard work. If you’re shy or worried that people ‘might look at you’ in the gym, there’s no need to be. Everyone’s there for the same reason and no one cares what you look like. David Lloyd Leisure have a great discount for NHS workers at the moment – you can get discounted membership, reduced joining fee and a free members package, worth up to £205.
2. Eat well at work
Make sure that you eat well at work. This can be tough for NHS workers because, on far too many occasions, you don’t even get the chance to sit down and have a full lunch-break. However, it’s very important that you try to eat properly in order to fuel your body for the tough work that you do. You don’t have to spend loads of your time-off preparing meals either. Take a look at our tips to make sure you eat enough on your shift.
3. Take up running
You’ve seen them on your drive home from work – joggers in their bright coloured jackets, pounding the pavement, being all healthy. Well, that can be you! Get some comfortable running shoes and clothing, then you’re good to go. Ask one of your friends to be your running buddy. That way you can push each other so that you don’t miss a session. You could even compete against each other to help improve your fitness. Running is great for you and if you persevere, we’re sure that you’ll catch the bug.
4. Stretch at work
NHS workers can spend most of their day stood up or carrying equipment around the hospital. Over time this can cause back problems. Make sure that you do some light stretching at the start of your shift to get your muscles prepared for the tasks ahead. If you have a spare few minutes in between jobs at different times of the day, stretch some more. This can help to keep you loose and prevent any injuries.
5. Weight-loss programs
Joining a weight-loss program, like Weight Watchers, is a very popular way of achieving your health goals in 2016. They offer excellent support to help you lose weight, make healthier food choices and get more active. Take a look at our latest discount for NHS workers to get you started.
Do you have any more tips for NHS workers to have a healthy 2016? Do you get enough exercise throughout your week? Let us know in the comments.