Many adults don’t generally have the time to manage a career, family, and social life and still do regular physical exercise. Something has got to give, and this is generally the least important, attractive, or urgent thing, namely exercise. It’s viewed as a luxury, not a necessity. Staying at home is no guarantee of having the time: not only are some mothers overwhelmed by the schedules of the rest of the family, but household tasks are also ever present. It sometimes seems impossible to find the time to exercise, buteven the most hectic schedule can be tweaked to make the time! Here’s how.
- Take the stairs: whether it’s at work or in the shopping center, avoid escalators and elevators. They do nothing to help you stay fit or lose weight.
- Park further away from the door: when shopping, park a little further away than usual. The extra steps are hardly noticeable and will help keep you in shape.
- Chores and the sound of music! Turn up the radio and dance while you’re dusting or get into the groove while you’re vacuuming. The combination of music, dancing, and housekeeping isn’t new, but boy does it work! Rock your way to fitness while cleaning and tidying. Careful to choose the right music and dance for the job – the jive and crystalware don’t go together! When all’s finished, you’re left with a clean house and, unlike Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones, a sense of satisfaction.
- Make fitness a family event. Most family members can walk and those that can’t can generally be carried or pushed. Instead of going off on your own, bring everyone along for an enjoyable walk. It can be as long or short as you like. Everyone benefits and the change of environment could lead to a change in the way family members interact, which can be refreshing if the usual interaction between the children, for example, is fighting!
- Being at work is no excuse. The type of exercise you do may be restricted by your work environment, but being at work is no excuse for not exercising. Walking to nearby offices is a viable and healthy alternative to always sending e-mails to colleagues, for example. Stretching at your desk can get a dormant circulation back up and running again. Stairs can replace the lift. For the more ambitious, lunchbreaks can be spent jogging or at the gym.
- Move as you talk. If you’re in for a long phone conversation, put your caller on speakerphone. Stand up, stretch your legs, and move around. Technology has given us the freedom to move—we just have to think to use it.
The amount of exercise you need to do to obtain a health benefit is minimal: just 6 minutes a day. Start by actively making a couple of small changes and before you know it you’ll be reaping the rewards. You are just a few small changes away from a healthier you.