Juggling school, sleep and socialisation can be challenging at the best of times for a teenager, never mind considering a schedule for exercise. And this small window of opportunity only gets narrower with age and responsibilities. After you leave school, PE classes are no longer a compulsory weekly activity and ploughing in the dreich (that's Scottish for dreary and dark!) weather seems silly if you have the luxury of a lift or a car. However, it has been hinted that even minimal activity can decrease the chance of dementia rearing its ugly head later in life. According to the Guardian [https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/sep/03/seven-ways-to-help-avoid-dementia] , maintaining a healthy weight and keeping fit are two out of seven critical factors to prevent dementia. This doesn’t just apply to teenagers though, it is stressed that it is crucial to keep these good habits throughout all stages in life.
So how do we incorporate exercise into our busy schedules and improve our capacity to be active?
You can start with walking. It may seem daft to consider our default movement as ‘exercise’ but getting 10,000 steps a day is very beneficial to the body, both physically and mentally. Not only is this activity fairly accessible to every age and stage financially, but also at any pace and location (just don’t trespass on your local farm – I don’t think the sheep would be too happy!) This also ties into socialisation - another factor which The Guardian mentioned to help prevent dementia – as walk n’ talk can be a great way to catch up with friends. So forget spending £3.50 on a static coffee visit and dust down those trainers, as exercise with a buddy is a no brainer.