Between work and your personal life, it can be challenging to find time in your busy schedule to work out. As important as it is to prioritize physical activity, most of us can’t seem to find the time to get moving, let alone adopt a full workout regimen.
In order to really commit to a training program, time management is crucial. Even when it seems you’re short on time, get creative with these five ways to fit a workout in and start seeing the benefits of physical fitness.
Use Your Commute
Even if you’ve just committed to an auto loan for your new vehicle, switch up your commute by going car-less once in a while. If your workplace is within walking or running distance, try switching up your loafers for trainers and enjoy the sunshine on your way to or from work.
For longer distances, or if you have extra cargo to haul to work, head to the garage and dust off your bicycle. Most cities have designated bike lanes, so you can often even bike the same routes you would drive if you were in your car or on a bus.
Start Where You Are
Most people spend a lot of time standing, sitting or otherwise waiting around, and you’d be surprised at how many opportunities there are to get your body moving. Keep your heart rate up throughout the day by taking the stairs from floor to floor or getting in a few push ups during a short break.
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Rather than working through your lunch break, or sitting to scroll on your phone, head to the gym for a quick workout, or even simply take a walk outside. Mid-day workouts have even been shown to increase productivity while at work.
Adjust Your Schedule
As much as you’d like to sleep in as long as possible, sometimes the best time to work on your fitness is first thing in the morning. By setting your alarm earlier and hitting the gym, you won’t disrupt the rest of your schedule.
If getting up early isn’t in the cards for you, try adding in a quick workout on your way home from work or after the kids go to bed. The most important thing is to choose a time of day that will be most sustainable and stick to it — even when you don’t always want to.
Few things are more satisfying than unwinding at the end of the day by settling in on the couch to watch a favorite show. To fit some more exercise into your day, try switching up your evening routine. During ads or commercials, drop down on the floor for a few reps. If you’d rather stay seated after a long day, swap out your armchair for an exercise ball.
Even studying or catching up on emails are opportunities to get your body in motion. On bigger exercise equipment such as treadmills or ellipticals, prop up a phone, book or laptop to go double-duty and cross things off your to-do list while boosting your heart rate.
Do It Together
Exercise is a great way to bond with those you love most. From walks at the park to competitive games of kickball, exercise can be a great way to connect with friends, partners and other loved ones. Most gyms have an option for family memberships, so all members of your family can stay active together.
Finding time to work out when you have children can be challenging. A jogging stroller, kid-friendly workout videos and baby carriers can enable even the busiest parents to work on their physical fitness, all without having to shell out for a babysitter.
Working out is a commitment, but it’s possible to get a daily dose of exercise even with the busiest of schedules. By finding ways to incorporate movement into your daily routine, you won’t have to sacrifice your health or progress for the other obligations in your life.
Mikkie is a freelance writer from Chicago. She is also a mother of two who loves sharing her ideas on interior design, budgeting hacks, and DIY. When she’s not writing, she’s chasing the little ones or rock climbing at the local climbing gym.
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