So far in this series we’ve focused most of our attention on making healthier food choices. But eating right is just one part of leading a healthy life. Getting active is also important to looking and feeling better.
It sounds contradictory, but exercising will actually give you more energy. On days when I make time to move I always feel better and have a lot more stamina to make it through my day.
But that’s part of the problem, isn’t it? Time. There’s never enough time to do everything we want to do in a given day, never mind adding something else to our routines.
So here’s the process that I’m currently working. I’m not perfect, but I’m trying.
Make a decision. Is getting fit a priority of yours or not? If you’re not ready to make that commitment, that’s fine. Own that choice. If you are ready, then make the choice to be more active. In Lisa Delaney’s book, Secrets of a Former Fat Girl, she told herself “It’s not an option,” whenever she felt like skipping a workout. That attitude shift will have a big impact on how you manage your time.
Be realistic. I work full time, help my husband with his business, and I’m the kind of mom who likes to spend time with her kid, so the times of day I can write are limited to the very early morning or after Miss O goes to bed. Because of these constraints, working out for an hour a day is not realistic for me. But 20-30 minutes I can manage.
Have a plan. If you don’t have a way to organize and plan your time, you will waste a lot of it. The important thing is to have a plan and follow it. This will keep you focused, show you your progress, and help you see the big picture of your goals.
One thing at a time. If you’re not at all active, just start moving more. Park far away from the store. Take a couple laps around the office. Take the stairs. Walking is a great first step when trying getting active for the first time (in a while). It’s easy on your body and you can literally do it anywhere, with little to no equipment.
The More The Merrier. Having a workout buddy is a great way to stay on track. They will help motivate you when you’re feeling low, and vice versa. Plus, it’s harder to skip out on a workout when you know someone’s waiting for you.
Move every day. Take a walk. Do an exercise video. Just move. You can even create an “off-day” workout that takes only 5-10 minutes. This is a great time to build in strength training with some planks and squats. No equipment needed. No excuses.