A message from Dr. Kelsey Louie, Acting Deputy Chief Medical Officer; and Janene Erickson, Manager, Partnerships & Projects, Office of the Chief Medical Officer
On National Health & Fitness Day (Saturday, June 3), let's get out and move! Our bodies are made to move, and being active regularly, if physically capable, is one of the best things we can do -- not just for our physical health, but also for our mental, emotional and spiritual health.
We have both always been very active people, including running and cycling long distances, and even competing in races over the years, but it's certainly not necessary to aim for this level of fitness to be healthy and well! We can each do whatever activity we enjoy to keep ourselves moving. The thing is to get into a routine with whatever you choose to do, and do it at a pace you can maintain, not one that will overexert you. It could be working out with weights, walking, running, or swimming, or you might want to make your activity more social by asking a friend to join you or joining a sports team.
Dr. Kelsey Louie and his wife Amanda Vick participating in a run in Victoria, BC.
If you have been less active or inactive, be sure to go slowly. You don't want to injure yourself by trying to do too much, too soon. Set a short-term, realistic, and achievable goal, e.g., “I will go for a 15-minute walk during my lunch break," or “I will do stretches every morning." Always listen to your body and pay attention to any “red flags," e.g., chest pains, extreme shortness of breath, or dizziness. If you experience these, you may need medical attention. While a good workout may cause mild soreness or stiffness, you may have pushed yourself too hard if you are sore for an extended length of time.
Better yet, join us in the FNHA's 30x30 Active Challenge to jumpstart your fitness routine. This challenge is simply a commitment to yourself do an activity of your choice for at least 30 minutes each of the 30 days of June.
Janene Erickson and Dr. Nel Wieman participating in the Vancouver Sun Run, 2023. Photo by Dr. Kelsey Louie.
Getting moving on a regular basis may be challenging at first, but keep in mind the incredible benefits you will reap, including:
You can do it! We'd love to hear about your efforts and results: let us know on social media by sharing your post and/or photo and using the hashtags #FNHAWellness, #30x30ActiveChallengeFNHA, and #BeActiveFNHA. If you'd like the FNHA Wellness Team to support you in sharing these, just email Active@FNHA.ca.
To help ensure safety for those with chronic conditions or mobility issues, we encourage you to check in with your physician or health care provider before beginning a new exercise regime.
You are welcome to access the FNHA's resources and tools to support your physical activity goals for June and beyond: