by Cathy White
It can be really difficult to fit exercise into your regular day. Working nine to five and spending time with the family has a way of taking up all your time and energy. But exercise is really important. It is the number one form of preventative medicine, it fights depression, and even helps energy levels throughout the day. Here are some ways to get more activity into your daily life.
1) Start Small
Making big changes all at once will be very discouraging. Instead, gradually increase your exercise routine. You might start doing short yoga videos when you first get up, or skip the elevator for the stairs when you can. Get off the bus one stop before your usual stop and walk the rest of the way. Park at the back of the parking lot when getting groceries at night. Stop and stretch after sitting a long time.
You can also switch out your sitting desk for a convertible standing desk so you are not sitting all day. Just standing instead of sitting all day will make a huge difference in your health and energy levels because standing does not disrupt circulation in your body like sitting does, and your legs, back, and abs will get a lot stronger over time. But make sure you can turn the desk back into a sitting desk so you don’t strain yourself at first.
2) Go For a Bike Ride
Biking is a great way to get exercise in and it is fun and satisfying. It is also good for the environment. Go for a bike ride after work, even if it is just around the block. It will loosen up your entire body and get your circulation flowing. Even better, try biking for part or all of your daily commute.
3) Do Sitting Exercises
Still want to get exercise in while working but you cannot get a standing desk? Try exercises you can do while sitting, like knee-ups and some stretches. Another good one is leg extensions, which works the muscles in your legs, stretch them, and all without being too noticeable or disruptive to the people around you. It will loosen you up and let you burn more calories without losing too much work time.
4) Workout During Your Lunch Break
If your office has a gym, then use it on your lunch breaks. Whatever you do, do not spend your lunch break sitting any longer than you have to. Get up, walk around, stretch. Go to the gym and spend some time on the treadmill or stationary bike. Making this a habit will improve your health significantly and you will start seeing positive changes in yourself fairly quickly.
5) Get Your Reading and TV Time While Moving
A lot of treadmills and stationary bikes have TV screens that can be hooked up to regular TV channels. Spend time that you would normally spend watching TV on the couch walking on a treadmill without missing your favorite shows. You can also read books, magazines, and newspapers with relative ease when doing this. You do not have to sprint at top speed to get healthy. Even walking at a normal pace while reading will bring huge improvements to your health.
6) Get your family to play a game of charades
Don’t want to work out after work and miss out on family time? That’s fine. But do not just watch television or movies. Get up and have the whole family play charades or another game that has physical activity. You will spend better quality time, have fun, and get exercise for the whole family in by moving around.