Life and Style : So you are a Jack of all trades when it comes to work and play. You are a mother, father, homemaker, corporate slave, boss or a full-time freelancer, and you have no time to exercise or eat healthy.
But believe us when we say - you can still spare 45 minutes to 1 hour in a day to exercise. Look closer. Don't you deserve better health? Higher energy? More fitness? All it takes is some clever planning and the health benefits are yours. Still not convinced? Read our list of the 7 best ways to add fitness to your daily life.
Wake up early. Sound sleep is a definite must for overall health benefits; therefore without compromising on your sleep pattern, try and stick to the old adage of 'early to bed and early to rise'. Working out in the morning helps in regulating appetite and boosts the levels of energy all day long. After all in the evening, you might have to work till late, help your kids with a project and don't miss that general feeling of exhaustion and lethargy as the sun sets. Morning workouts are always a good bet as they help you plan your days better.
Use your TV addiction to add fitness breaks to your day. If you're glued to your television screen and losing track of even one ball during an important cricket match is unthinkable, then use this addiction. How, you ask? By taking fitness breaks during the cricket commercials. And we know there are enough of them. Instead of reaching for a handful of chips or cookies, discuss that last play over a set of squats or dips. Here are some ideas:
Pushups: Perform floor push ups. Too difficult for you? Initiate by placing your hands on the wall and then pushing your body back with full intensity. Do this 10 times and you would have successfully utilised your 3 minutes of commercial time.
Chair squats: Stand up, pretend to sit down (don't sit down completely to intensify your workout) and then stand with full force.
On the spot marching: Swing both your arms in opposite directions and jump along with it.
Perform these three exercises during the commercial break within a match and check the results for yourself!
Try an active commute. One of the smartest and most practical ways of adding fitness to your daily routine is by walking your way to your daily destination. Walk to a bus stop, cycle or bike your way to work. Especially tweaking your work transportation routine will help in adding to your fitness level.
Mix socializing with exercising. What if we tell you that by thinking innovatively you can mix a bit of exercising in your social engagements too? Excited enough? Here's how - Plan events that get you moving. Go for a discover-your-locality walk around the neighbourhood - parks if you're lucky, or play a game of football on Saturday evening with your buddies. Very soon you'll find that these active breaks from routine become your preferred method of spending free time.
Turn chores into exercise. Physical activity is important because it becomes your repetitive and habitual movement in the course of your day whether you make the conscious effort to go exercise or not. It is a part of your day-to-day life. If you work in an office and have a pretty sedentary lifestyle or if your lifestyle includes a lot of physical movements that increase your heart rate; doing your daily chores can help. You will always have this with you even on days or in phases of your life when you don't feel like exercising or don't think you can.
Be acquainted with all the indicators of progress: When your high school jeans start fitting you again, when you can lift heavier weights without getting exhausted....you realise that it is this feeling of accomplishment and achievment that keeps you interested in fitness.
Some of the other positive indicators of a good exercise routine are:
- Your family doctor congratulates you on improved levels of cholesterol, blood pressure, bone density, triglycerides, and blood sugars.
- Getting a good night's sleep.
- Having more energy throughout the day.
- Observing your resting heart rate drop over time.
- Realizing your muscles are not screaming with pain, after you've helped a friend move a heavy piece of furniture.
Commit to another person. For some people, adhering to the social aspect of exercise is important. For instance, if you have agreed to walk with your neighbourhood friend after dinner, there are slim chances that you will let them down.