Between work, family, traffic, errands, and other responsibilities, finding time to squeeze some regular exercise into our hectic schedules is easier said than done.
But skipping exercise is a terrible idea.
Inactivity will only lead to health problems such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
I’ve been trying to be more active throughout the day so in this article I’ll share some simple ways you can sneak a little exercise into your daily routine.
Make a habit of using them regularly and you’ll enjoy the benefits of a healthier lifestyle.
Park and Walk
I have a coworker that I often go to lunch with and whenever he drives we always end up doing multiple laps around the parking lot looking for the closest spot possible.
It drives me nuts!
Instead of wasting time and gas cruising around the parking lot at work or the grocery store, park a little further away and walk the extra distance.
I do this all the time and it amazes me that I’ll actually get inside before all the people who are sitting in their cars waiting for a spot to open up.
Take the Stairs
I don’t think I’ve ever taken the elevator at work; I always take the stairs instead.
Sure, it helps that my desk is only on the second floor, but you’d be surprised how many people I see waiting for the elevator to bring them up one lousy flight of stairs.
Get in the habit of taking the stairs whenever possible.
If you work or live way up on the 75th floor, try getting off a few floors early and walking the rest of the way.
Bike or Walk to Work
Obviously this one only applies if you live within a few miles from where you work.
Biking 40 miles to work each morning isn’t very practical.
But a woman I work with only lives about 3 miles from the office and she bicycles to work almost every day!
A neat compromise would be to park a few miles away from the office and then ride your bike the rest of the way.
Take Five Minute Refresher Walks Each Hour
The human body is not designed to spend hour after hour sitting at a desk or on the couch.
Sitting for long periods of time just isn’t healthy.
Try getting up once every hour and taking a quick, five minute stroll.
I do that every hour during my 9 hour work day and that adds up to 45 minutes of walking per day!
I even set up an email reminder to go off hourly so I don’t forget to take my power walk.
Find a Walking Buddy
Hourly walking breaks are great but it’s too easy to skip them if you’re busy or feeling lazy.
Having someone to walk with can be a great motivator. Not only will you be less likely to skip a session but having someone to chat with will make it more enjoyable too.
I have a work buddy that also likes to take a quick walk so we usually walk together and vent about our day to release some stress.
I used my Fitbit to measure the distance we walk and 3 laps around the parking lot is just over a mile. We can easily walk a couple of miles during our lunch break and it feels good to get some exercise right after eating lunch.
Squeeze Some Exercise into Commercial Breaks
Instead of spending your entire night channel surfing or snacking, take advantage of commercial breaks to squeeze in a little mini-workout.
You can do a quick set of squats, calf raises, push-ups, or stomach crunches. You can even run up and down the stairs a few times until your favorite show comes back on.
Turn Off the TV
If you really want to get active try turning the TV off altogether and finding something else to do with yourself.
Spend time with your family, clean the house, fold laundry, take a walk, work on your garden or find something else that will keep you busy and on your feet.
Try to stay off your butt and move around as much as possible. Right now, I’m writing this article while standing at the kitchen counter instead of sitting at my desk.
These ideas might not seem like much individually but when you add them up you’ll be surprised at how healthier and more energetic you feel.
What suggestions do you have for sneaking some exercise into your daily routine?