Daily workouts are a great way to stay healthy and fit. But with today's busy schedules, finding time for regular exercise sessions can be a challenge. If that's your workout dilemma, don't sweat it. You can still keep your body strong and toned with some simple drills that are easy to squeeze into any schedule, no matter how jammed it is. More importantly, you won't feel burdened trying to get your daily dose of exercise or, worse, guilty that you didn't.
Fit Living on the Fly: 8 Easy Ways to Stay Active in a Busy Schedule Without Formal Workouts
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Ready to work the body without a workout? These eight ideas will do the job:
Choose the Stairs
Elevators and escalators may be the most effortless ways to reach upper floors, but stairs can be quicker due to no wait times and more healthful. Taking the stairs allows you to get your heart pumping while strengthening the leg muscles, abdominals, hips, thighs, and bones. Besides using the stairs at home, opt for them at work and out shopping. By climbing stairs throughout the day, you can accumulate 30 minutes or more of physical activity.
Embrace Household Chores
Tidying up helps you maintain a clean, organized home--and keeps you fit. Whether you're scrubbing the floor, decluttering the closets, scouring the bathroom, or vacuuming, household chores burn significant calories, promote heart health, and tone muscles. Housework has also been linked to better brain health and longer life. The next time chores beckon you, embrace them for all the perks they offer, with no gym time.
Watch the News Actively
If you're an avid news junkie, why not make yourself an active one too? Turn on the news and use the time to do sit-ups, leg lifts, arm circles, and standing jumps, or just march in place. By keeping your body moving while you're catching up on current events, you'll be doubly productive. And whether the news is good or bad, you'll feel stronger and more energized when the program is over.
Clean Up Your Neighborhood
Maintaining a clean, beautiful neighborhood takes a community effort. Don't sidestep your part in picking up trash along the streets and sidewalks and tending to common flower gardens and green spaces. Not only is it a worthy effort, but you'll also reap unintentional exercise when you get to work sprucing up the hood. You might organize a weekly cleanup event with a group of neighbors or enlist the kids to help.
Strengthen Those Kegels
Pelvic floor muscles can lose their strength after childbearing and as you age. But performing kegel exercises by contracting and releasing those muscles can garner stark improvements to pelvic floor fitness. Even better, you can do kegels anywhere, anytime, and without infringing on your schedule. And men and women both can benefit. For the best outcome, check with your doctor to learn the proper method for doing kegels.
Stretch Before Bed
Preparing the body for bedtime helps ensure a restful night, and stretching is the way to go. Because they're relaxing and calming, you won't think of stretches as exercise even though they technically are. The best pre-bedtime stretches include spinal twists, side stretches, child's pose, and forward folds, although any stretching that alleviates pain and tension can be useful. Always remember to breathe while performing stretches.
Dance to the Music
Dancing is fun, uplifting, and something you can do while engaged in other tasks. Next time you're brushing your teeth, doing dishes, or folding laundry, swing your hips and tap your feet. You'll make the task more entertaining and work the body. Dancing is one of the best exercises you can do since it targets different muscle groups as well as the heart. Jiving to your favorite music adds an extra element of fun.
Play with the Kids
Kids keep you busy and active. They also offer an opportunity to get exercise while enjoying family time. Aim for play that involves moving the body, like hide-n-seek, tag, kickball, and fitness video games. Or head to the park for an outdoor scavenger hunt or a game of Frisbee. While active play helps keep you in shape without having to carve out gym time, it also benefits the kids, who won't notice they're getting exercise. It's a win-win for all.
Just because you don't have time to work out doesn't mean you can't keep your body strong, toned, and fit. These workoutless ideas will help provide the exercise you need when your schedule won't.
Always consult your physician before beginning any exercise program. This general information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your healthcare professional. Consult with your healthcare professional to design an appropriate exercise routine. If you experience any pain or difficulty with these exercises, stop and consult your healthcare provider.