So many of us long to be active, but either struggle to make time in our busy schedules for daily exercise, or have a hard time finding motivation to do it. Just because you don’t have an affinity for hitting the gym doesn’t mean you can’t build activity into your everyday routine. These tips will help you seamlessly build activity back into your schedule.
Always Opt for the “Hard Way”
Your everyday life likely involves several ways in which you can be active, but you might typically opt for the easy way. For example, it’s easier to take an elevator than it is to take the stairs. Or, it’s easier to park close to the store than it is to park far away.
If you find yourself frequently opting to take the “easy way,” challenge yourself to do things the “hard way.” Start small, such as taking the stairs as often as possible, and work your way up from there. It’s not going to add a significant amount of time to the task you’re looking to accomplish, but this small change is definitely for the better.
Don’t Use a Chair
If you work at a desk all day, you probably find yourself sitting for upwards of 8 hours a day (and that’s not even counting the commute to and from work or the amount of time spent on the couch afterward, decompressing from the long day of sitting).
You can minimize the amount of time spent sitting during the day and increase your daily activity by getting rid of your desk chair and utilizing a standing desk. Need to sit? Use a yoga ball chair for when you need to take a load off. Keeping your balance while sitting will keep your muscles working.
Pace When Talking on the Phone
Most of us do this one already anyway. However, if you sit around while talking on the phone, another great way to increase your activity levels is to walk around while speaking.
If you find that you have recurring meetings that don’t require much of your input (or can be taken away from your desk), this is a great way to incorporate a walk into your day.
Make Movement Fun
For most of us, the idea of working out can be uninteresting. The basic workout staples (abs, legs, arms, etc.) are so monotonous that we can’t work up the motivation to get moving.
However, if you’re looking for a little activity sprinkled into your life, movement can be much less boring. You can play music while cleaning, for example, enticing yourself to dance and add movement to your routine. You can wear a pedometer (or use a FitBit or other tracking device) to try and reach a step goal. Examine your routine, determine where there’s room for movement, and make it interesting!
Learn to Love Walking
Going for a daily walk is great for you physically, mentally, and emotionally. Mild, prolonged activity is one of the most effective ways to burn fat and allows you the headspace to process your day and de-stress (far more than spending a few hours before bed on Netflix). You’ll notice a difference in your everyday life once you’ve grown accustomed to this new routine. When in doubt, walk it out!
More daily activity can sound unrealistic or overwhelming, but truthfully, it isn’t. Better yet, it doesn’t take time away from your day. These tactics are a great starting point. Look into your schedule and determine where there’s room for movement. Tailoring these tips to your needs is the best way to achieve your goals without compromising your schedule.