Every part of the year has its own challenges that make it difficult to find time to exercise. There are the holidays, vacations, and our family members’ schedules to work around. Our lives can become a maze of going to work, taking care of the kids, keeping up with the household and carving out time for entertaining friends and family. If a person is lucky, he or she might get a bit of time to chill out and wind down in between it all. How in the midst of all the hustle and bustle is a person supposed to find the time to work out?
The American Heart Association recommends a workout frequency of 30 minutes per day 5 days a week. The good news is that research has shown that dividing those 30 minutes up into two or three segments of 10-15 minutes each day, will still provide you with health benefits. So keep that in mind, a little bit here and a little bit there, definitely add up.
Consider these 7 ways to carve out time to exercise:
1. Skip the Snooze Button
Set your clock for 30-45 minutes earlier than normal and do your workout in the morning. If the thought of bounding out of bed, changing your clothes and working out seems like too much, consider going to bed in your workout clothes.. Need more encouragement? Think how awesome you’ll feel to cross “exercise today” off of your to-do list before breakfast!
2. Lunchtime Exercise
Many people find that working out at lunch suits them well. Check to see if your company has an onsite workout facility or if they have an agreement with a health club close-by where you can work out over lunch. Something as simple as consistently walking for 15-30 minutes, at lunch, can make a difference over time.
3. Work Out at Work
Working out while you work? What? It is not as hard as it may seem. Consider replacing your chair with a stability ball to strengthen your core. Keep a set of dumbbells at your desk. A number of times a day, punch out 12-15 reps of exercises like squats, leg extensions, biceps curls and triceps presses. See this article for details on how to perform desk exercises.
4. Take the Tikes with You.
Are your children still young? Invest in a jogging stroller and bring them along with you. Or find an activity where you can be active together.
5. Grab a Friend
Schedule your workouts like you schedule the other parts of your life. Set a date with a friend, or your spouse or significant other to workout. Change it up and make it fun. Get outside and take a bike ride or sign up for a class at the local gym. There are sure to be a variety of classes from Zumba, to weight lifting to swimming that the two of you can do together.
6. Get Moving During TV Time
Just because the TV is on, doesn’t mean you have to become a couch potato. Make TV time your cue to get your workout done. Take advantage of the commercial breaks by doing squats, lunges, burpees or some other high intensity exercise. (That is unless you DVR your shows… then you are just going to have to squat, lunge and curl while watching your favorite episode.) Your toned body will thank you.
7. Take Advantage of Stairs
You’ve heard it before, I’m sure. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Think that is not making much of a difference? Think again. If you walk 2 flights of stairs 3 times a day, you burn 30 calories. If you do this day in and day out, you’d be on track to shed a little over 3 pounds in a year just from this one little bit of exercise. Take them faster or do more flights on a regular basis and the calories you burn will be even higher.
Here’s to your health!
Your Barker, Beck, Collins & Kronauge Agency Team