It’s recommended that we do at least half an hour of exercise each day but if you’re anything like most people, this turns out to be an exception rather than the norm. It can often feel impossible to fit exercise into your day when you feel that time is completely against you but with some forward planning and determination, it can be easier than you think. Here are some tips for incorporating exercise into your average day even when you’re rushed off your feet.
Make it a priority.
If something isn’t truly important to you, chances are that it’ll slip further and further down your list of priorities so if you’re serious about getting fit, take every opportunity to fit in some extra exercise.
Book it in.
If you’re finding that life is getting in the way of your workouts, try treating them as appointments and literally book them in your free time. This way, you’re far less likely to double book yourself and making it official may be just the motivation you need to get more serious about your exercise plans.
Get a fitness buddy.
Can you arrange to work out with a like-minded friend? It’s harder to back out when someone else is involved and it’s a great opportunity to make your workout sessions more fun.
Set up visual reminders.
It’s easy to push exercise to the back of your mind when you don’t have visual reminders in front of you. Whether it’s an intrusive Post-It note staring you in the face whenever you open the cupboard or keeping your workout gear in full view so you can’t ignore it, constant reminders can be good encouragement. If you need an extra push to spur you into action, create visual reminders of your fitness goals to really hit home.
Do what you can.
You might not have hours to dedicate to your fitness regime but that’s not a great excuse. When you’re pushed for time, you might find yourself wondering whether it’s worth squeezing in a five minute workout here and there but it all adds up. Little things like taking the stairs instead of using the elevator or getting off the bus a stop earlier than normal are great ways to fit in some extra exercise without doing anything drastically different. You can also try exercising while you’re doing other things. For example, you can use exercise equipment while you’re watching your favourite television shows or have a dance around while you’re tackling the housework. Get creative – you’d be surprised how easy it is to fit a bit of extra exercise to your normal routine.
Don’t push yourself too hard, too soon. If you’re aiming to kickstart a fitness regime again, aiming too high can be a big mistake. Set yourself smaller, realistic goals and you’re less likely to get frustrated and lose motivation. Don’t expect to be able to work out every day straight away – give your body chance to get used to the new lifestyle and build things up more slowly. Sure, it’ll take longer to see any changes but there’s a lot more chance that you’ll maintain the enthusiasm to reach your goal(s).
Start the day off right.
Are you an early riser? Take advantage of this by fitting in an early morning workout before you start the day and it will quickly become a routine part of your day.
Use your lunch break productively.
Do you usually spend your lunch break at your desk? Try going for a walk instead. This gives you an opportunity to take a break away from work, as well as offering the chance to fit in some exercise.
Get friends and family on board.
Include your nearest and dearest in your fitness endeavors. If they’re aware of your goals, there’s less chance that they’ll accidentally sabotage your plans.