Exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle alongside other habits. However, many can see it being a time-consuming task. Perhaps there isn’t enough time to exercise during the day. Work, family, and other duties may take up time that we may have used to exercise. We’re here to say that exercise doesn’t have to be time-consuming nor take up a significant portion of your day. Keeping that in mind, here are ways that you can fit exercise into a busy schedule.
Wedge micro-workouts into your schedule
If you only have so little time outside of other priorities, you can use the time efficiently. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) and High-intensity circuit training (HICT) are workout routines that were designed for getting the most out of your workout in a short amount of time.
HICT combines cardio and resistance training. The New York Times reports on a seven-minute HICT workout. There, they lay out 12 exercises that should be performed in rapid succession. The workout is uncomfortable, but the core theme of micro-workouts is that you should feel spent after doing short bursts of exercise. To maximise on the effects, each exercise should be repeated about 15 times. Then, depending on your time, you can repeat the whole routine another one or two times.
HIIT is made up of short bursts of very intense cardio workouts along with short resting periods. The quick alternation of this exercise and resting periods is important and what defines HIIT. If you’re out of breath, you’re doing it right. This method is effective in increasing your endurance.
These workouts were especially designed to be done in a short amount of time and can be really useful for people with busy schedules. Any sort of free time is usually enough to squeeze in a micro-workout here and there.
Seize the opportunity to exercise
Even with a really busy schedule, there are bound to be short periods of free time that you can exercise in. Even if this isn’t possible, some tasks can be joined with exercise. Compare driving to work with walking or jogging to work. Jogging may produce a sweat and that may not be suitable for most work environments. However, walking is a low-intense exercise that still confers a lot of benefits. Walking when you otherwise would’ve taken some form of transport, like elevators or cars, can drastically increase the number of steps you take.
Walking when you would otherwise be sitting adds even more. Studies have shown that even those who exercise regularly still feel the negative effects of sitting down for long periods of time. Set alarms to remind you to get up for a minute or so when you would be sitting for a long time.
And then when you might have unexpected moments of freedom, keep exercise shoes and clothes on-hand to perform micro-workouts or even just low-intensity exercises. When you don’t have much time to exercise, seize every opportunity you get.
Make exercise a part of your schedule
Commitment is a big issue when it comes to exercising. Some people can’t exercise on a whim and that’s okay. Maybe they work better with a timetable. If that’s the case, find times where you can exercise and make those times dedicated workout times. It might take a little bit of shuffling with your duties, but it can work. Better yet, increase the length of your day and fit exercise into the new times. Wake up earlier to do your exercise, but make sure you still get enough sleep. Sleep is essential for great health.
Lunch-break workouts are a great way of re-invigorating yourself after a morning of hard work. This is great if there’s a nearby place to shower and workout. It’s tempting to use these kinds of free periods as relaxation periods. Trust us, the benefits of exercise will make other parts of your day feel less stressful and more relaxed.
If you really want to get into it, make exercise a part of your lifestyle: exercise with your significant other; exercise with your friends; exercise with your children or even just do physical activities with them. The point of the matter is that if you were to spend time with others, perhaps do it while exercising. This way you can encourage each other to live healthier lives together.