Long work hours, too tired, feeling stressed, busy at work? Yes, these are our daily excuses for not being active and not following a healthy diet during our busy work schedules. However, being active does not require finding time to get to the gym or following a stringent diet. Here are 10 ways to get fit whilst having fun:
1. Be an active TV watcher. When you watch television, try to incorporate some physical activity. Put a treadmill in front of the TV and walk whilst watching. You could also add in some stretching, abdominal exercises or push-ups during commercials. Doing a little activity during the commercial breaks can add up to almost 20 minutes of activity for every hour of TV you watch.
2. Try an active commute. One of the best ways to fit activity into your life is by incorporating it into your school or work transportation routine. If you live close enough, consider cycling to work. If you take the bus or taxi, walk to a bus stop that’s an extra block or two away, or get off the bus a stop sooner than usual and get a few more steps in. Alternatively, if you drive to work, park as far away as you can from the building—even a few blocks away, if possible.
3. Mix socialising with exercising. Do you normally spend time with your family or friends by going to dinner, watching sports on TV or going to the movies? Make your social time more active by planning events that are fun and get all of you moving. Go for a family hike on a Saturday morning, play a game of football with your buddies, or just go to a park and run around with your children. There are so many options for squeezing more activity into your social calendar.
4. Turn chores into workouts. When you go grocery shopping, take an entire lap around the store before you begin purchasing grocery items. When you go to a shopping mall, ensure you see every floor. You could even climb up the steps to each and every floor at the mall. Also, increase the intensity with which you do your regular household chores, such as cleaning, mowing and shopping. Mow your neighbour’s yard in addition to yours, or park at the end of the lot when you go shopping.
5. Make a work meeting a form of exercise. If you have a lot of meetings at work, tryhaving standing meetings which will give you a break from sitting at your desk for too long. You could even go one step further and initiate walking meetings, by taking a walk with your colleagues within the office or around the office building or compound. When on your mobile phone, walk around, rather than sit at your desk.
6. Have breakfast every day. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, when you wake up it gives your body that well needed energy and sets your metabolism up for the rest of the day. People who skip breakfast are also more likely to gain weight.
7. Schedule regular snacks. Try to have one mid-morning and one mid-afternoon. Have healthy things available for grab-and-go snacks, like fruit, granola bars, dried fruit, or trail mix.
8. Utilize your lunch hour. Look for a gym nearby where you can get a quick workout in. Alternatively, you can go on a long walk around the building compound with a colleague or even a quick run during your lunch hour. You will go back to the office feeling more energetic in the afternoon.
9. Take 5 minute breaks. When work stress starts knocking, take a five-minute break and go for a stroll. This will not only help to clear your head, but it is also a good way to both increase your metabolism and stay active.
10. Offer your services. Volunteering for a community-service project, such working with an NGO or a or cleaning up a park or other green space, on weekends is a great way to add some activity to your day while improving your community at the same time.
This article is contributed by Shane Bilsborough, COO & Co-Founder, Stepathlon Lifestyle Pvt ltd.