It is a common obstacle these days that there is never enough time in the day. We often cry time poor due to long workdays, family commitments, and just life in general.
So how do we manage our time better to ensure we are looking after ourselves by getting in daily exercise?
Depending on the circumstances of the individual and their specific training program, plus keeping their goals in mind, there are several ways to find that additional time needed to continue with consistent exercise each week.
Getting Up Earlier
Depending on what time you start your day, there may be an opportunity to teach yourself to rise an hour earlier to get that much valued exercise in before your workday starts.
Research shows that starting the day with exercise can provide greater energy levels, mental clarity and release of many endorphins, which can make your day more productive.
Finding that extra hour in the morning all depends on what your usual wake up time is. If you usually wake up at 4 a.m., then chances are you won’t change to a 3 a.m. start; however, if you get up at 6 a.m., then perhaps a 5 a.m. change isn’t out of the question.
Yes, it can be harder to wake up earlier, especially if you have been waking up at the same time for a period of time; however, the motivation should come from the fact that you’re enhancing your life with more regular exercise and knowledge that over time, your ‘body clock’ will adapt to the new start time.
Lunch Time Training
Whether it’s a gym session or walk around the block, lunch time can prove to be a vital cog in the day when resetting your mind for an afternoon of work.
By exercising in the middle of the day, you are not only breaking up the day, but giving your mind and body an opportunity to focus on something else, which can then lead to a more productive afternoon.
Lunch time training may only be available to those that have a sufficient break; however, if this is available, it is certainly worthwhile taking advantage of. After all, it is your time to use for you, so rather than sitting in the lunch room, you may be able to go for a 30 minute walk outside, increasing your daily steps, breathing in fresh air and listen to the calming sounds of the surrounding environment.
Even better if you can make it to a nearby gym, then you can get in a great workout in a short period of time, also adding to your weekly consistency.
After Work Training
The key to training after work is to ensure you don’t go home first. Many a time you can go home first to get your gym gear but tend to lose motivation due to the home environment being so distracting and comfortable. So, with that in mind, have your gym gear with you so that as soon as you finish work. You’ll have no excuses but to head to the gym.
Perhaps you can negotiate your start and finish times with your employer to allow you a slightly earlier finish so that you do have time to get to the gym before further family commitments later that afternoon/evening.
While a lot of people prefer not to plan as much for the weekend and keep it available for family time, there is an opportunity to schedule in some training or activities to keep up the weekly routine.
If you do have a young family, simple things like bike rides, a day at the beach, mountain climb or trail walks can all be done to achieve greater daily steps, but also allows for the entire family to be involved.
Further to this an early morning or late afternoon gym session could also be achieved if committed too.
Check your local gym to see if they have day care, enabling you to take your children who can be supervised while you partake in a workout.
Indirect Ways to Get Exercise
These are ways to simply add into your weekly routine, which will enable you to be more active without having to change too much.
- When picking up kids from school, park further away from the school. This creates the addition of more steps to and from your kids’ classrooms.
- Arrive at school pick up early. Use the waiting time for the bell to ring to get for a short walk.
- When shopping, park further away from the shops. When you do your weekly grocery shop, park further away to also increase your daily step count.
- Take the stairs, not the elevator. This also creates a heightened level of daily activity.
Planning Your Week
By mapping out your week and planning each day, you can see where you have time available for exercise. This provides you with a forecast of the week. Therefore, if there is something that comes up that could potentially fill the time you have put aside for exercise, you have already blocked that time out and made the commitment to yourself for training.
Use a diary or weekly planner to schedule your appointments, work commitments, child activities etc. The more accurate you are, the better forecast you can make and further your commitment to your own exercise.
The above are just a few examples of how the rare commodity of time can be utilized better to ensure we look after ourselves and further our own health and fitness. These are also ideas that can be passed along to our clients to help find the time of physical activity.
It can be difficult at times and often the priority of our own health and fitness takes a backseat to children and other family members; however, if time is managed accordingly, the potential of regular exercise can be achieved.
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