Did you realize that exercising 30 minutes a day takes up less than 2% of your 24 hours? Let's say you are sleeping 8 of those . . . that 30 minutes of exercise still only takes up about 3% of your waking hours.
So how is it that the biggest excuse we hear for not exercising is "I don't have time"?
I completely understand that long to do lists and endless obligations quickly fill up our schedule. . . and time is our most valuable and limited resource.
However, finding the time in your schedule can be as easy as getting creative, managing your schedule well, and making exercise a priority. Here are some ways to help you find your sanity and find the time to exercise. Trust me. . . exercise is the best medicine for a hectic life and stressful schedule.
1. Exercise During Your Lunch Hour
Take just half of your lunch hour and go for a walk or get a workout in. You may not have time to go to the gym, but there are lots of things you can do in your office, a park, or even your office parking lot. When fitting in exercise to your work day, stashing make up wipes and dry shampoo in your bag can be a life saver.
2. Make Exercise A Social Affair
A friend to exercise with is great accountability. You are less likely to cancel when someone else is counting on you and you will feel more refreshed afterwards because of the relational connection you made. In addition, planning a meet up to walk in the park or for a spin class "happy hour" is much healthier than meeting at a restaurant for food and drinks. . . and if you decide to go out afterwards you are more likely to make healthier choices if you have just exercised.
3. Incorporate Fitness Into Family Time
It's good for your body and a great example to your family to exercise together. Go for an afternoon hike, a Saturday morning bike ride, set aside a day for swimming (and actually get in the pool too) or my favorite . . . a yoga session before the kids go to bed. You will deepen your family connections, laugh a lot, and not feel guilty about the time you are taking to exercise (although you should never feel guilty about taking time to care for yourself).
4. Work Out Smarter NOT Longer
Make that work out short and sweet! I often don't have time for an hour long work out. Always remember that some exercise is exponentially better than no exercise. Read my blog about HIIT training and you might even be convinced that a 20 minute workout is better than an hour long training session. If you want to incorporate strength training with cardio benefits, do a 20 minute full body circuit combining upper body and lower body exercises (bicep curls while doing squats). And remember, use the heaviest weight you can lift safely and you will need to do fewer repetitions . . . you will naturally get out of the gym more quickly!
5. Actually Schedule Your Workout
Any activity or project will fill up the time we have allotted for it. So, if you don't plan for exercise other things will surely fill that time. Schedule your workout in your phone or calendar just like you would any other appointment and make it a priority not to cancel on yourself.
Scheduling a workout with a personal trainer or following up with a wellness coach can help keep you on track if you are having trouble keeping your health or movement a priority. During the times when the going gets tough, this person will help remind you of why you committed to exercising in the first place and help you keep the course. You will be accountable to someone else, and the investment that you make in this persons time will motivate you to be consistent.
If you are interested in talking to a personal trainer or wellness coach, give us a call at 901-316-5456 or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. At Peak Potential Physiotherapy & Wellness, we offer specialized services to meet your particular fitness needs and goals at whatever stage you are in your wellness journey.