How to Make Time for Exercise

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Wellness Beyond Fifty ™

People have good intentions about being physically active but often they allow things to get in their way. “I want to exercise, but I don’t have any extra time,” they tell me. Or, “I don’t want to take a brisk walk when it’s cold and/or dark outside,” they say. Or, “I don’t enjoy exercise, so I can never stick with it.”

Can you relate to any of this? If so, identify your perceived barriers, then figure out how to overcome them.

Like any problem that you want to solve, the first thing to do is define it, and then develop a strategy to resolve it.

If the weather is your excuse, exercise indoors. Join a gym. Sign up for yoga. Enroll in a Zumba class. Go to a climate-controlled shopping mall and walk for at least 30 minutes. They are still around. If you have a hard time sticking with an exercise program, ask a friend or family member to join you. If you prefer to exercise closer to home, try a DVD or a cable-television fitness program that fits your schedule.

Speaking of schedules, be flexible. Do two 15-minute sessions or three 10-minute sessions instead of one continuous 30-minute session. You’ll burn the same number of calories and come close to getting the same cardio workout by stepping it up a bit. Multi-tasking works too. Ride your exercise bike while watching Netflix or TV. Take your dog for a walk instead of letting it out in the yard.

Look at exercise as an opportunity instead of another thing on your “to-do-list.” Be active instead of passive. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Park your car on the far end of the parking lot. Go visit someone instead of sending an email. Think about all the ways modern technology has made you complacent and then start moving.

Lisa Burbage

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