Let’s face it: we lead busy lives. And while some days it’s easy to fit in exercise, it also the activity that tends to get the boot on busy days. I like to run in the mornings because I find it peaceful, but it is also a guarantee that it won’t get cut from my busy schedule. Things come up during the day that we can’t plan for: you don’t get out of work on time, someone asks you to drinks/dinner, your family needs you, you forgot to go to the grocery store…the list goes on and on. Based on my own experiences, I have compiled 10 tips that help me keep up with my exercises. Hope they help!
1. Plan out your workouts. To the best of your ability, look at your schedule ahead of time. I like to plan out my workouts on Sunday based on what social/work events I have planned.
2. Be flexible. Things will pop on your schedule that you didn’t know about on Sunday – have alternate times that work for you. Know that some workouts may need to be moved around, and have some alternative slots carved out. Don’t let the change throw your flow!
3. Wake up an hour earlier. As I said above, working out in the morning is a way to ensure that your exercise gets done, no matter what happens during the day. Remember, if you’re getting up earlier, it will be easier if you go to bed earlier!
4. Utilize your lunch hour. Ah, the elusive lunch hour. Like most people, I rarely take my lunch breaks. But you ARE entitled to it. And if your day is extra busy, use that hour to go to the gym or go for a walk. I sometimes dash to the gym for a 5k on the treadmill on busy days.
5. Socialize during exercise. Instead of going out for dinner with friends, invite them on a run/walk/hike. You still get to socialize, you get your exercise in, and the best part is, you have some wonderful time to chat and catch up. I also will call my sisters during shakeout runs; it keeps me from running too fast, and I enjoy the “company”.
6. Turn your commute into exercise. If you live in a city, try lengthening the walking portion of your commute. Walk to work or walk to a train station that is further from your apartment or work. Even adding 30 minutes of walking to your day is beneficial.
7. Shorten your workout. Sometimes, there is just not enough time in the day. If you planned a long workout and only have time for a short one, don’t stress. Even a short workout is better than none.
8. Combine your errands and exercise. If you have errands to do, turn it into a workout. You can run, walk, or ride your bike to the stores you need to hit. You can even arrange a pickup or take the subway back to your home if you have too much carry.
9. Be realistic. There are some days when you just have to let it go. Recognize these days, adjust your weekly schedule, and move on. It is not worth stressing over.
10. Find a workout that is fun. If you find a type of exercise that you enjoy, you are more likely to make room for it. Forcing yourself to do something you hate is going to be a constant battle. Join a team or a club, take classes, or build routines at the gym that you like.
How do you fit in your exercise?