According to the American Heart Association (AHA), only one in five adults and teens gets enough exercise to maintain their health. Their recommendation is that you fit in at least 30 minutes of heart-pumping physical activity to your day, five days per week. Even with this seemingly easy requirement, it is a challenge for most people to fit exercise into their day.
If you feel like this don’t worry. One of the reasons people cite when asked why they don’t exercise is time. For some people, the reason they don’t exercise is that the thought of having to wear gym clothes and perform complex exercises is tiring enough for them.
Whatever your reason might be, it is possible to meet the AHA requirement with a little bit of creativity. Yes, complex exercises that target specific muscle groups are good for you. But, you don’t always need them in order to get the exercise you need. In this post, we will go over ten ways non-stressful ways to sneak exercise into your daily routine, especially if you’re a busy person.
Quick hint: If you have an electronic fitness tracker, this will be helpful in determining just how much work you’re putting in with these non-stressful yet effective ways to exercising throughout the day.
- Take a 5-minute walk every hour throughout the day. Over the course of an eight-hour work-day, this will add up to 40 minutes. A 40-minute walk can burn up to 244 calories.
- Use the stairs. Even if it is just one flight of stairs, moving on them in small chunks adds up very quickly.
- Use publication transportation. If you work in the city, it might be best to ditch your car and go with public transportation. Doing this can save you gas money and the hassle of traffic. An added benefit here is that you will have to walk to catch your bus, train or trolley. This quickly adds to your physical activity quota for the day as well.
- Bike to work. Sneak more physical activity into your day by riding your bike to work. Not only will you save on gas; you will be helping the environment by cutting down on emissions. Plus, you will be getting some great exercise as well.
- Take a walk with your dog before and after work. Have a canine companion? You probably have to take them out before you go to work and after you get back. Use those opportunities to squeeze in a quick walk around the block.
- Do simple exercises while you are in line waiting. Exercise while you are waiting in line to buy lunch or while you’re grabbing essentials at the pharmacy after work. Heel raises, twists and shoulder rolls are examples of simple exercises you can do while waiting in line.
- Get the children involved and do fun activities with them. If you have children, get them in on the action as well. This is healthy for them as well especially since we live in an era where childhood obesity is at its’ highest.
- Sneak it in on your lunch break. Divide your lunch break into two. Eat during the first half and then slip in some physical activity during the second half of it.
- Dance. Nobody has to see it and it does not have to be perfect. Dancing for 30 minutes can burn between 150 and 250 calories. So turn on your favorite music and get to burning off those calories.
- Use a standing desk. For decades, millions of people have sat at their desks to work for eight to ten hour days. Recent studies show however that sitting down for that long has many bad side effects. The odds for heart disease, blood clots, back pain and dementia all increase with sitting down too much at your desk. And so the case has been made for standing desks. You don’t have to stand all day if you don’t want to. However, if you can get this in your workspace, you will reap the physical benefits of it.
- Have an exercise ball in your office. Instead of using your chair throughout the day, get an exercise ball and sit on that instead. Apart from being a great alternative to your chair, there are a myriad of exercises you can perform with an exercise ball.
Adding more physical activity to your day may seem daunting at first. However, if you’re creative you will be able to meet that daily recommendation of moving for at least 30 minutes a day to maintain a healthy weight.