Many people feel they cannot “fit” physical activity into their day because of hectic schedules and work or family obligations. This is a myth we choose to believe and there are actually several ways this can be incorporated to maximize overall health and well-being. Including this in your daily routine will increase your work productivity and benefit your mental health, relationships and long term physical health as well.
Here are few examples of strategies other busy people use to meet their activity goals:
1. Active Commuting: incorporate physical activity into daily commutes by walking or biking to work and using stairs instead of elevators.
2. Break-Time Exercises: short 10-minute exercise breaks during work hours, such as stretching, walking or jogging in place, quick bodyweight exercises.
3. Lunchtime Workouts: Utilizing lunch breaks for physical activity can be done in a variety of ways, including: going to a nearby fitness facility or gym; going for a brisk walk or run outdoors; going to group exercise classes; or participating in an online or virtual class.
4. Desk Exercises and Movement: including small movement throughout the workday decreases risks of cardiovascular disease. Desk stretches and exercises can relieve muscle tension and improve circulation. Try standing or walking during phone calls or meetings. Consider regular 5-minute short breaks to move around and stretch after every 25 minutes of work.
5. Team-based Physical Activities: grab a colleague or friend and go for a walk; start or participate in office fitness challenges or competitions; creating a supportive environment for physical activity by keeping fresh clothes and workout supplies with you.
6. Active Family Time: Consider incorporating physical activity into family time. Engage in active hobbies or sports with family members such as hiking or bike rides. Plan active outings or vacations with opportunities for regular movement.
7. Mindful Movement and Stress Reduction: Intentionally focusing on being stronger and more resilient benefits physical and mental health. Yoga, tai chi, or meditation practices, mindful walking or stretching exercises, and incorporating deep breathing exercises throughout the day are all possible strategies.
Conclusion: there is no reason you cannot be physically active during the day, but there are many excuses to be sedentary! Set your intention to increase your daily activity and do it!