We live busy and demanding lives with countless activities that pull us in many directions. Between work, school and kids, it just seems that there just isn’t any time left for exercise or fitness activities.
“I don’t have time.” This is what we often tell ourselves as an excuse. But what we actually need to find is motivation. There’s a trick to make it much easier: don’t squeeze your schedule for an extra fitness hour - fit it into your daily activities!
Here are three suggestions of ways to fit fitness into your busy routine:
Start by multitasking
Add more movement to your normal daily activities at home or on the job. This is the painless and probably the most fun way - you exercise without noticing it.
1. Choose standing over sitting
This helps you release the stress accumulated from being sedentary most of the workday. Make it a habit to stand up while talking on the phone or answering your emails - it’s best when you can organize your workspace accordingly.
Also, as a part of creating a more fitnessy environment, keep some exercising equipment near your desk. Thus, whenever you have an opportunity, you’ll be more likely to spend time actively.
Even - and especially - when you’re waiting for something, don’t just sit or stand. While the office coffee machine is making you a cappuccino or while your code is compiling, flex your muscles. Loosen up your shoulders and work a bit on your neck, roll from your toes to your heels - anything you prefer as long as it involves some muscle work.
Use every chance to do something, and your body will appreciate it.
If you work in an office, use the space you have - it allows for more than you think, even if there’s no workout zone. For example, when walking to the break room or restroom, take the longest route and add a few stairs where possible. If you need to talk to a coworker, get up and walk to their desk instead of calling or messaging. And walk to work - that’ll also help you get your mind ready for the day.
For those of us who work from home, walking is more of a problem. If it bores you out to circle around the living room, try doing squats, leg raises, or even simply standing instead of sitting - just for a change.
3. Leave yourself no option to be a couch potato
Being more active spreads out to the after-work time as well. Need to go shopping? Walk to the store. Need to go to the neighborhood mall? Park on the edge of the lot and walk, or park on the topmost level of the parking garage and use the stairs up and down. When walking the dog, run for a minute or two or walk at a faster pace.
And, finally, drag that treadmill, stationary bike or rowing machine out of the garage and place it in front of your television so that you have to be walking when you watch your favorite reality show.
Form healthy habits
Set your alarm clock
Are you a morning person? Set your alarm 20-30 minutes earlier each morning and use that extra time to exercise. It only takes 20-30 minutes of activity to get your heart pumping and your metabolism revving to burn more calories. Starting your day with exercise will avoid excuses and interruptions later in the day or after work.
Also, sticking to a more or less fixed schedule helps your organism perform better. It will know that this is when you get up, then goes the meal time - when your body knows what to expect, your metabolism works more effectively.
Change your way of thinking
Treat exercising as something you want to do rather than a tedious necessity. Remember that you’re a grownup, and no one makes you do anything. Think of it: if you’ve decided to move more, you’ve done it because you WANTED to, not because someone told you. Such a mindset helps a great deal.
Exercises should be viewed as fun. If you don’t look forward to your current training program, then find one that you enjoy and that you want to fit into your schedule.
And stop I-don’t-have-time-ing to avoid fitness! We rarely say anything like that in regard to socializing online, playing video games or watching TV, because we enjoy this time. Make exercising equally pleasant, and that’ll solve the issue.
So, get out of that desk chair or off that couch and fit fitness into your life! And soon, you may find yourself much more willing to do some serious workout.