For the third installment of our ThrivePass 9-5 series, we’re giving you a realistic approach to working out while working at a full-time job. Here are our top tips to exercising consistently:
Visualize Your Priorities
When peering down at your daily to-do list it can be tempting to nix exercise for the sake of more pressing chores, but be wary. Lisa Druxman, MA, exercise counselor and founder of Stroller Strides told Experience Life that, “it’s not enough to get things done. You need to get the right things done. It’s OK to have dirty clothes in your hamper [….] It’s not OK to cheat your health.”
To avoid the to-do list departures, Druxman suggest the following:
On a sheet of paper create three boxes that represent the most important aspects of your life (e.g. family, work, health.)
- For each category, list the top three to-dos that would make the most difference. In your family that might be cooking or helping with home. For work it may be returning phone calls or completing a presentation. For health, include exercise, and eating right or other priorities.
- Finally, to follow through, block out sections on your calendar to complete those specific goals. Be as uncompromising about finding time to help yourself as you would for work or family.
Readjust Your Mindset
Big changes happen through small shifts in your daily habits. If you’re an ‘all or nothing’ exerciser, you could benefit from readjusting your mindset to take advantage of breaks in your day. If you have five minutes here and there, fit in a couple of squats, or sit-ups, lunges, or jumping jacks. While sporadic exercises may not give you washboard abs, it can, overtime, help build a habit. If you’re struggling to exercise because of a lack of motivation this shift in mindset can help you get started. The key to a brief exercise is to really making it count. If you’re only doing five minutes every couple of hours, work to elevate your heart rate and give 100% the entire time.
In a previous post we discussed the 10,000-step phenomenon, started and perpetuated by fitness trackers like FitBit. The idea is that by walking 10,000 steps a day you can maintain, or lose weight. While the ideal actually depends a great deal on extenuating circumstances like: speed, starting weight, rigor, and so on, 10,000 steps a day is still a good goal. If you live a predominantly sedentary life, or if you forgo evening workouts because of exhaustion or lack of motivation aiming for 10,000 steps a day is a good way to get moving. FitBits and their tracking counterparts can help increase your awareness of your daily activity, and help you improve your stamina faster than if you were going-it-alone.
Do Exercises You Like To Do
It can be really hard to make something a habit if you don’t enjoy doing it. Just because your best friend loves to run, doesn’t mean you will. When you’re trying to find your perfect exercise, identify first what it is you’re hoping to get from it, and how much time you can devote to it. If you can exercise for an hour three times a week, running may be a good option. If you’re hoping to de-stress after a long day, long walks outside can help clear the mind while giving you moderate exercise. Yoga can be used for relaxation, Pilates for core strength, high intensity training for weight loss. There are a million classes, and a million options when it comes to fitness. By understanding what you want to get out of your exercises you can find a fitness routine that best fits your life.
How do you fit exercise in to your life? Let us know by commenting below or on our Twitter page. As always, stay up to date with all ThrivePass news by following us here or on Twitter and LinkedIn.