Maybe you have to run from job number one to job number two, then dart off to soccer practice to pick up the children. Perhaps you travel for work and spend time dealing with jet lag. Whatever the reason, you don’t have time to spend an hour at the gym.
Do you throw up your hands in despair? You don’t have to! You can sneak in exercise in several ways. Here’s what to do!
1. Use a Phone App
You can work out anytime and nearly anywhere with a fitness phone app designed to make you sweat. Apps such as DailyBurn feature routines you can perform in as few as 10 minutes.
Additionally, use an app such as StandApp to set intervals for getting moving while you work. Set an alarm to go off every 30-60 minutes. When it does, get up from your desk, stretch and stroll around the office. Getting the blood flowing to your brain takes only one or two minutes but boosts productivity significantly.
2. Max Out Wait Times
What do you do when you’re waiting in line at the store? You could perform small squats or calf raises.
The same goes for when you are a passenger in a vehicle. If you’re traveling for business, for example, you can perform isometric arm exercises and some light stretches in the airport shuttle.
3. Plan to Work out While Traveling
Even if you travel for business, you do get some downtime to work out. But it’s difficult to do so in a suit. Always carry casual clothing with you so that even if your hotel lacks a facility, when opportunities for working out do arise, you can take advantage. Even taking a walk around the block after work gets your blood pumping!
4. Invest in Resistance Bands
Resistance bands cost little and travel well as they take up little space. Plus, you can use them to tone while you watch TV or listen to podcasts.
If you’re not sure how to start with resistance band training, you can find tons of instructional videos on YouTube. Oftentimes, these stream for free.
5. Sit on a Fitness Ball Instead of a Chair
Are you still sitting on a regular office chair? Try replacing it with an inflatable fitness ball for at least part of the day to strengthen your core while you work at your desk. Fitness balls cost relatively little and provide instant stress relief — feeling tense? Simply bounce away for a few minutes to reduce tension.
When you sit on a fitness ball, you engage your entire abdominal and lower back region to keep your balance. This tones your abs effortlessly. Plus, if you suffer back pain, lying back over your ball briefly provides relief.
6. Take the Stairs Instead of the Elevator
If you live or work above the ground floor, why take the elevator when climbing stairs elevates your heart rate? Even if you don’t climb every story (such as if you work in a skyscraper), walking even a few flights burns some calories. As much as possible, always opt for the stairs. If you must take an escalator, walk up anyway instead of letting it carry you passively.
7. Walk to Lunch or Run Errands
Do you have multiple options for where to eat lunch near your workplace? Why not walk there instead of driving? You’ll reduce your carbon footprint and help save the planet while burning calories.
Strive to find walking opportunities throughout your day. For example, if you need stamps or other supplies, use foot power to get to a nearby store.
8. Ride a Bike to Work
How do you commute daily? Riding your bike to work doesn’t only help you sneak in fitness — it improves your overall happiness. Exercising this way turns your commute into a form of moving meditation, helping to alleviate stress and boost your mood naturally.
Additionally, biking gets you outside in the fresh air, further alleviating symptoms of anxiety and depression. Researchers discovered that getting outside for 30 minutes daily decreases symptoms of depression as effectively as medication in some cases. Plus, you don’t have to worry about any negative side effects.
9. Dance the Night Away
Okay, if you’re super-busy, you probably lack time to go out clubbing with the squad. But who says you need a dance floor to get your groove on?
Dock your iPhone when you get home, put on your favorite jams and dance around your living room. If you have little ones, invite them to join in the fun. You’ll get the entire family moving their bodies and having a blast. Challenge each other to come up with the best moves, and remember — hearty laughter counts as an ab workout, too.
Sneaking in Fitness When You’re Swamped
When you’re swamped, carving out an hour to hit the gym can prove difficult. But by following a few simple tips, you can squeeze in healthy habits and fitness nearly anytime and anywhere!