Having worked in the health and fitness industry for so many years, I cannot recall the number of times I have heard those all too familiar words, ‘I don’t have time to exercise!’ Fast forward to becoming a stay at home mom, and it appears that I still can’t escape those inevitable words even when I’m not predominately working inside of the health and fitness industry day in and day out.
I am in no way judging those who use this line when asked why they don’t exercise often. In fact, life is indeed fast-paced, and when you add family responsibilities to the mix, it can almost seem impossible to justify spending time on such a frivolous activity when there are more important issues at hand to deal with.
Yet, many people often mistake exercise as being an option or a luxury. Government health guidelines suggest that we should all as adults be aiming towards at least 20 to 30 minutes of exercise per day and preferably over a minimum of 5 days each week. Yet, if we continue to see exercise as only for the select few and do not change our attitudes otherwise, we are in danger of shortchanging our overall health in the long term.
Changing our Attitude Towards Exercise
Though I may not judge those who suggest exercise is a time-consuming activity that they could do without, it does worry me that exercise is somehow seen as an afterthought for many adults. However, in all honesty, we are nearly all capable of incorporating it into our everyday lives and routines without even having to change or disturb our current routine in any way, shape or form. And it is all merely to do with the power of working with what we’ve got!
How We Can Incorporate Exercise Into Our Everyday Routines
How many of us do the household chores? As much as we may detest this time of the day, it is inevitable that we will have to devote a small amount of time each day to tidying things away, and perhaps hoovering and mopping to name but a few. But, what if I were to tell you that these types of activities could also become a daily exercising session?
Next time you do a batch of chores, time how long it takes you to complete it all in one go. If it takes around the 20 to 30-minute mark, you have indeed completed the time of a short exercise session. Now turn this into a course which you carry out 5 days of the week, and you have already met your government-recommended exercise targets! Now, how simple is that?
Understanding the Simplicity of An Active Lifestyle
I know firsthand from experience that the words active lifestyle can make many people shiver at the mere thought. This suggestion usually conjures up visions of circuit training, outdoor running, or scaling the mountain ranges. But most of the time it merely refers to the art of getting moving in our everyday lives.
Once you understand how simple everyday activities can be utilized and turned into an additional exercise session as you undertake them, you can then begin implementing slightly more challenging areas to make them count that little bit more towards your targets every day.
Improving Your Fitness Levels Through Short Activity Bursts
Meaningful exercise does not have to be long, lengthy and tedious. In fact, the most effective of activities are done in short spurts every so often. For example, from the simple changes such as getting off a bus stop early every day and briskly walking the remainder of the way, to running up and down the stairs for a couple of minutes each time just to get that heart rate up and the blood pumping.
Why not put on some background music and clean the kitchen floor the good old-fashioned way with a rag and get those abs working? Could you challenge yourself to get the chores done in record time each day as a way of getting more active, or perhaps you could commit to washing the car a couple of times each week as a great stretching exercise session?
You see, if you change your mindset towards exercising and start implementing routines that are effective but also work to your own needs and methods, then you instantly change your perception and how you approach physical activity. Within weeks, just by focusing on understanding how effective some of the everyday life activities that you partake in are, you will soon come to realize that we all have time to exercise and have perhaps even been doing so without realizing for quite some time now.
Who knows, you may also be inspired to take it further once you know that you are in fact capable of undertaking many a physically challenging role – and you haven’t yet set foot once in a local gym to achieve any of it!