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The A-Z guide to fitness - part 1

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The A-Z Guide to Fitness - Part 1 – Live Great – Great Eastern Life

A for Aerobics: 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity is the recommended amount for healthy adults. In plain English, that means jogging, a gentle cycle ride or walking with the kids once a day for just 22 minutes.

B for Bicycling: Bicycling is a great way to build your muscles, strengthen your heart and even has the reputation of keeping your weight down. Besides, there is something about travelling from point A to B on a bicycle that makes commuting such a joy. Why not saddle up with a group and make friends in the process? Try Joyriders in Singapore or any number bike clubs throughout Malaysia.

C for Cleaning: Doing some cleaning around the house doesn't have to be a chore. Vacuuming and sweeping work your upper body and both burn an average of 112 calories in 30 minutes. Scrubbing the bathtub works your back, shoulders and arms, and can burn an average of 136 calories in 30 minutes. To find out more about how many calories you need on a daily basis use our handy calculator.

D for Dancing: It doesn't matter if you are interested in hip-hop, freestyle or even belly dancing. Dancing, in general, is growing in popularity when it comes to weight management. You can dance alone in your bedroom, sure, but it's always more fun when you are dancing in a group with friends. So grab a few like-minded friends and head to the nearest dance studio!

Dance Arts offers a variety of classes in Singapore for would-be dancers while light footed Malaysians may like to head over to William and Luisa's Danceworld.

E for Exercise Ball: An exercise ball doesn't have to be just an exercise ball. If you are planted in the office for 10 hours daily, consider switching your office chair with an exercise ball. Sitting on a ball burns more energy than perching motionless on a chair, since your body is always adjusting itself for balance, according to a study conducted by the State University of New York in 2008.

To make the most of your exercise ball, click here.

F for Football: Football is arguably the most popular sport in Singapore and Malaysia. The great thing about football is that it works nearly every part of your body. Whether you are looking to improve your aerobic or anaerobic capacity, a single game of football can burn up to 372 calories, depending on your body size. Besides, it's also a team sport, which makes it extra fun.

Wherever you are in the world you can always find a team to join for a friendly game.

G for Games: By games, we mean anything you can play with the entire family, whether it is a game of Frisbee or even a video game on Wii Fit. The point is to engage you and your family in fun activities that will also work up a sweat.

For an example of active games, click here.

H for Hiking: Just because you are a city-dweller, that doesn't mean you can't bask in nature. Whether it is Bukit Timah Nature Reserve in Singapore or the Cameron Highlands in Malaysia, there are plenty of hiking places to visit on your own or with your loved ones. Depending on the length of the hike and the difficulty of the terrain, you can burn more than 600 calories every hour!

I for Ice-skating: If it's the weekend and it's way too hot for some outdoor activities, how about taking your family to the nearest skating rink? J Cube, one of the newest shopping malls in Singapore, has its very own skating rink, and Sunway Pyramid Ice in Kuala Lumpur has Malaysia's largest ice-skating rink. Picking it up may be tough, but once you get used to gliding over ice on a thin blade, ice-skating is a tremendous sport to strengthen your legs and core muscles. Did we also mention that it is a lot of fun?

J for Junior Gyms: Junior Gyms, or gyms for children, specialise in motor skills development, gymnastics and sports skills development. Establishments like The Little Gym in both Malaysia and Singapore cater for children from four months to 12 years old. Its range of activities can improve strength, flexibility, balance, rhythm and even cognitive and socialisation skills for your young ones.

K for Kayaking: The seas that surround us may not have giant waves for us to surf, but fitness enthusiasts who have a passion for the sea can consider kayaking as a great alternative. Kayaking depends heavily on your arms and core muscles, and it is also a great way for you and your friends and family to explore the untamed parts of the country! Take a course in Singapore or if you're in Malaysia try Kuching Kayak, which organises kayaking expeditions into the nearby mangrove forests, as well as dolphin spotting trips.

L for Line Dancing: High energy dance routines, like freestyle and hip-hop, may not be suitable for the elderly, which is where line dancing comes in. For them, dancing provides heart-healthy benefits of an aerobic exercise while also allowing them to engage in a social activity. In fact, according to a 21-year study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, elderly people who engage in some form of physical activities, including line dancing, are 63% less likely to have Alzheimer's.

M for Marathon: Running in general can burn up to 745 calories per hour, so you can imagine the kind of health benefits one can experience for marathons. Besides, aside from jogging a lot more in preparation for the marathon, you will also be eating better in the months leading up to the event.

If you're keen on running make sure you're doing it comfortably!

Whatever your preference there are plenty of activities to help you on your way. You can also get fit and feel fabulous with our partners.

Sources:

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