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Too Busy to Work Out? Here’s How to Make Time

When it comes to working fitness into your daily life, it’s all about time management. If you have no trouble finding three hours to watch the latest Netflix phenomenon, but struggle to identify 45 minutes when you could go to the gym, here are some tips.

1. Maximize your time

The Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines recommend that adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week – which can be daunting if you think about it as one big chunk of time. But the effects of exercise are cumulative – so even if you manage to fit in 10 minutes of lunges during your coffee break and 30 minutes of mall-walking at lunch, you’re already coming out ahead. Even small bouts of exercise can make a big difference!

2. Use active transportation

This takes a bit of planning and preparation – at least in Canada’s winters – but if you can use active transportation to get where you need to go, you’ll be making huge strides in your personal fitness level. Walking, biking, even skiing or snowshoeing will get you where you need to go while ensuring you get a good cardiovascular workout, too.

3. Be prepared

Take some time on Sunday night to lay the groundwork for an active week. Set out a week’s worth of gym clothes and make sure your shoes, gym membership card and water bottle are in your bag, by the door, so that you’re not running around at the last minute (and then giving up and deciding to go tomorrow). Taking your gym equipment with you when you go to work means you might even be able to squeeze in a workout at lunchtime.

4. When you Watch TV, don’t fast-forward through the commercials

It seems silly to watch TV with commercials in this day and age, but the commercial breaks present a perfect opportunity to jump up off the couch for a burst of activity. One half-hour sitcom will have enough commercial breaks to fit in these five fast exercises. And with the rest of the show right around the corner, the reward for your efforts is built right in!

5. Change your phrasing, change your life

Sometimes, it’s matter of using your words. Instead of saying “I don’t have time to work out,” try saying, “Working out isn’t a priority for me” – then see how that feels. If you really want to work fitness into your day, make it a priority, and treat it that way. Add your gym classes to your calendar as appointments, and make sure that you keep them.

Your turn: Share your favourite way of fitting in fitness in the comment section below!

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This blog strives to provide Nova Scotians with reliable health information. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, when it comes to your health and well-being, talk to your doctor about what is right for you.
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