Maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle doesn't mean you kill it at the gym every day. It's simply the habit of making activity and exercise a part of your everyday life. You'd be surprised at the little ways you can work out throughout your day, especially when you can't spend an hour on the treadmill. Here are a few ways you can work exercise into your daily routine at work and at home.
- A two-minute break to rest your eyes can turn into a mini workout session. Exercise your abs and glutes muscles by holding them in a contraction of several seconds. Release and do several reps. Do calf raises where you stand and raise up on your toes and lower back down as many times as you can in a minute.
- You can also use various tools such as a hand gripper to work your forearms or sit on a stability ball to continually work your core throughout the day.
- Instead of standing idly at the copy machine as you watch the copies spew out, take this time spent standing to do some side and forward leg lifts, calf raises or lunges.
- In meetings you need to be paying attention and not causing any interruptions, but that doesn't mean you can't covertly work your muscles. With your hands under the table and palms up, press up as if to lift the table. Do several reps where you hold for a few seconds and then release. Just be careful that you do this discreetly! You can place your hands on top of the table and press down with your palms, as well.
- Use the stairs instead of the elevator.
- When you have a message for a colleague, go to them instead of calling or emailing them.
- During lunch, take a walk outside at a brisk pace, or walk around the office or climb the stairs a few times to get your heart rate up.
- When you get to work, park a bit farther away than usual or consider riding your bike to work.
- If possible, run your errands without a car. Whether it's grocery shopping, seeing a friend or going for a checkup, try to walk at a brisk pace, or even bike, as much as you can.
- Bring your kids along - pushing along a stroller takes more effort than simply walking and burns more calories. Even simply strapping a baby to your back (or front) creates more resistance and hence more intensive exercise.
- Turn your dates and meet-ups into workout sessions. If you're meeting with a friend or have a date, propose going for a jog or a walk, or even playing a game of tennis, instead of sitting at home or at a coffee shop.
- Schedule fun activities with the whole family - hikes, soccer games, bike rides, even tag! Everyone enjoys themselves and you get a workout!
- As you wait in line for something, don’t just stand there; take that time to do some calf raises or contract and release your abs and glutes.
- As you catch up with your favorite TV show, clear some space around your living room for a mini workout while still watching TV. You can lift some dumbbells, do some push ups and, if you have enough space, jump rope.