Previously, we discussed ways to make your game day snacks healthier. This week, we’re going to focus on ways to sprinkle in some physical activity into your big day of football viewing.
For most people, the average week involves a lot of sitting. At work, at home, in the car, etc. we spend a lot of time on our butts. As more studies are published regarding the effects of sitting, we’re learning that doing so for extended periods of time can be extremely detrimental to our health. Therefore, we have to find ways to move more, especially if we plan to devote a marathon stretch of our Saturday or Sunday (or both) to watching football.
Another added benefit is that higher intensity exercise tends to suppress appetite. Since we usually combine our football with lots of snacks, finding a way to control intake can only help. At the very least, by incorporating a healthy behavior, you might be more inclined to make healthier choices which will also keep your waistline under control.
One of the best ways to ensure you get in some quality activity is do so before your team kicks off. While you can certainly head to the gym, it’s not necessary. Your body is a great work out tool, and you’re only limited by your imagination.
For starters, you can download the "ANYWHERE" Workout and perform some or all of the exercises included in that program. I really like HIIT workouts, and I’m fortunate to have no shortage of hills right outside my front door. I’ll usually go outside for 15-20 minutes of hill sprints, while soaking up some much needed Vitamin D.
Another alternative, which I really used to enjoy, was a morning recreational sports league. From flag football to basketball to soccer or whatever your favorite sport, it’s a great way to blow off some steam before the games begin. You’ll also meet some new people, while playing a sport that you enjoy. Check your local news and information sources to learn what leagues and sports might be available to you.
Since you’ve got three hours, you might as well create your own little exercise challenge as you watch. Pick a few bodyweight exercises that are easy to do in your living room, like squats, push-ups or jumps. Next, create a schedule for how and when you’ll perform them based upon events that occur in-game.
Here’s a how your exercise challenge might look:
Opposing team (team you’re rooting against) gets a first down: 1 push-up/squat/jump
Opposing team scores a touchdown: 6 push-ups/squats/jumps
Opposing team kicks a field goal: 3 push-ups/squats/jumps
Opposing team completes extra point/2-pt. conversion: 1 or 2 push-ups/squats/jumps
Opposing team scores a safety: 2 push-ups/squats/jumps
Opposing team forces a punt: 3 push-ups/squats/jumps
Opposing team forces a turnover: 5 push-ups/squats/jumps
Opposing team gets a sack: 2 push-ups/squats/jumps
Opposing team wins: 50 push-ups/squats/jumps
As you can see, there’s potentially a lot of work to be done. The upside to your team having a really bad day on the field is that you’ll come away from it super fit!
If nothing else, go for a walk before or after the game. In 2019 you can even go for a walk during the game and never miss a thing. Just download the appropriate viewing app and head outside. If you’re really feeling energetic you can use the game we created above, with sprints substituted for the push-ups/squats/jumps.
It’s important to find ways to move, especially after a long week of sitting. Therefore, you’d be well served to throw in some of the ideas discussed above prior to your afternoon of football. Even getting out for a walk will help.