Keeping fit shouldn't be a pipe dream. Here are some ideas on how to stay active to help improve mental health, boost the immune system and make us feel better about the current situation.

Let's get started

Everything you need to get started - from the benefits of exercise, to physical activity guides:

    I'm fit and healthy but can't get to the gym just now, where can I find virtual exercise classes?

    There are lots of free virtual options out there that will help you recreate an exercise class vibe in your home. We've listed a few of the options currently available.

    • Les Mills 'At Home Workouts'. Thanks to Falkirk Community Trust, Falkirk Council employees can enjoy Body Combat, Body Balance, Body Attack and much more (include Born to Move Classes for children) at a click of a button.
    • The Body Coach. Love him or hate him, Joe Wicks has amassed a huge following offering free High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) sessions suitable for all the family.
    • Barry's UK, the hip global HIIT studio chain, is currently offering free Instagram workouts to watch on your phone. Follow @barrysuk, read the IC LIVE timetable and turn up in your living room for your chosen session. Press the ‘live' barrysuk icon in Instagram stories and away you go. Can't log on for a live class? The workouts can be accessed for 24hrs in stories.
    • The NHS Fitness Studio offers a huge range of free online workouts you can follow – from aerobic and strength to Pilates and yoga.
    • Strictly Come Dancing Oti Mabuse workouts may be designed for kids but, adults love them too.
    • The Ballet Coach also offers free online classes for children and adults.
    • For yogis two great options include CorePower Yoga and lululemon.
    • Nike Training Club App is great for your phone or tablet, offering a wide range of workouts from Mood Boosters to Head-to-Toe Meltdown.

    I love the outdoors, what exercise can I still do in the fresh air?

    The government has said if we are exercising on our own, we can exercise outside as much as we want to. Other guidelines are in place for exercising in groups.

    • Cycling is one of the best ways to keep fit and socially distance yourself from others. Our Cycle lanes and routes page shows you where the nearest shared use paths are in our area.
    • Running. Simple and easy. Lace up your trainers and off you go. Before you head off, it might be a good idea to plan your run using a free app like Strava, MapMyRun or RunCoach to ensure rack up the miles close to home. If you are new to running, try the NHS Couch to 5k programme.
    • Walking is also a great way to get an all-round workout. Just 30 minutes of putting one foot in front of the other can help increase cardiovascular fitness, strengthen bones, reduce excess body fat and boost muscle power and endurance – and you don't need any special equipment to enjoy it!
    • You can walk and see more of Falkirk at the same time. The Paths and Walks page has a number of path network leaflets developed by the Outdoor Access Team. Visit Falkirk also have a section on walking on their website.

    What other activities can I do to stay active?

    You don't have to jump around to build up a sweat. There are other ways you can keep active without even knowing it.

    • Carry out that spring clean you'd been putting off as the moving and the vacuuming will help raise the heart rate. Plus, having a clear out will declutter your home and improve wellbeing.
    • Got a garden? If the weather is dry you can get outside and tidy up, cut the grass and hedges and paint fences (all the things you've been putting off!). You can even have a chat with your neighbours but remember to stay 2 metres apart.
    • If you've got kids in the house, why not play games with them? Skipping, a game of tig or even hopscotch. Or you could create an obstacle course and time each other to see who completes it the fastest.

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    Remember to start your exercise plan slowly and gradually build up. You know your own limits and it is important that you stick to them.