Squeeze Exercise Into Your Busy Day

Wednesday, September 27, 2006 - 8:56am

By Stacy Popke

After reading this article, you won’t have an excuse to skip exercising! There are numerous, simple ways to integrate exercises into your daily routine without missing a beat in your busy life. Whether you’re at the office, at home, or in the car, there’s always time for exercise.

Exercise at the office

The workplace can provide you with a surprisingly good workout. A desk job doesn’t have to mean forgoing your fit body. Fidgeting in your chair is one way to burn a few extra calories while doing your work. Parking at the end of the lot and taking the stairs instead of the elevator is a standard suggestion. But how about doing a set of squats while washing your hands during a bathroom break? Or rear leg lifts while you’re waiting for that fax to go through?

Stand or walk while on the phone. Better yet, sit against a wall—that is, without using a chair. Take a walk during your lunch hour. Put on a pair of comfortable sneakers and you’re ready to go. Whether you’re hoofing it alone or with a bunch of co-workers, walking is a perfect way to re-energize for the second half of the workday.

Are you looking to build muscle? Bring a pair of dumbbells to work or just use your own bodyweight as resistance. Even everyday objects found on your desk can be utilized. Remember, no excuses. There are plenty of bodybuilding exercises to do either seated at your desk or next to it.

For more information for those wanting to exercise but who have a busy working life see the following articles from TheDietChannel: Power Workout for Busy Executives and Stretches You Can Do At Work to Reboot Your Energy.

Exercise at home

The opportunities to get in a quick cardio session at home are enormous. You can exercise while you cook. This is great for cooks who want to avoid engaging in an unwanted taste fest. Do jumping jacks while the water is coming to a boil. Do some pushups in-between stirring the food. Do rear leg lifts while washing the vegetables.

Housework doesn’t have to be just a chore. It’s also a good source of exercise. Pushing a vacuum, washing windows, sweeping the floor, and mowing the lawn are practical ways to fit in exercise during your day. Have fun with it—you’ll burn more calories. Instead of just pushing that vacuum or broom, try dancing with it to your favorite songs. Run with your lawn mower to really work your lungs. You get the idea.

TV time is another easy way to fit in some exercise. Skipping rope, doing jumping jacks, marching in place and weight training are all good ways of revamping your usual TV time into workout time. My favorite workout while watching TV is bouncing on a mini-trampoline. Also known as rebounding, this workout is almost too fun to be called exercise. And here’s a bonus I’ve noticed—sometimes I get so absorbed in what I’m watching on TV that I’ll actually exercise longer than if the TV wasn’t on.

For further information on exercising options for busy moms see the following article from TheDietChannel: Quick Fitness: 10-Minute Workout for Busy Moms.

Exercise running errands

Errand running does not have to put a damper on your cardio time. Do isometric exercises while standing in line or sitting in the car. Just tighten whatever body part you want to work and hold it for a few seconds (or longer, if you can manage it). Isometric movements can effectively tone your abdominals, rear end, thighs, triceps, chest—all the usual trouble spots. Plus, you can do them anywhere while still being discreet.

Every little bit of exercise counts

In this article, I listed specific exercises to do with certain activities. These are just suggestions, not die-hard rules. If you prefer marching in place to jumping jacks, then by all means make the switch. Being happy and having fun with your exercise choices is an important part of living an active lifestyle.

For further ideas on fitting exercise into your busy day see the following article from TheDietChannel: Make Exercise A Habit: Try The 15-Minute Boot Camp Workout.

A former weight training instructor and Montessori school teacher, Stacy Popke works as a freelance writer specializing in fitness-related articles.