One thing we all seem to be short on is time. There is never enough time in the day to work, get the kids to school, eat, do the laundry, AND exercise. Something always falls short and it tends to be the most important thing, your health! Here are some tips, strategies and a bonus at home workout to help fuel your health flame.
Do you really not have enough time to exercise?
Time is a tricky bugger. While it seems like we never have enough, oftentimes we simply aren’t using it efficiently. Priorities play a big role in how we spend our time. How you prioritize your day dictates what tasks will and won’t get done that day. Sometimes changes to your priorities can make a huge difference in your health and the way you live your life. Take a few minutes to think about things that are important to you and rank them. Don’t let the list get too long! If you have too many priorities then the important things end up getting pushed to the side. Try to keep the list between 3-7 top priorities (erring on the lower end).
Once you have your priorities together you can take a look at the things that mean the most to you. Decide if those priorities are truly important to your soul or if they are on the list out of obligation, guilt or any other feelings. For many of us, exercise and personal health is not on that list of top priorities. It tends to fall by the wayside when we are responsible for other people, have important jobs, or are homemakers. If you find yourself falling into that category then it may be time to take an introspective look at your priorities and see if you can shift them. At any age your health should be in the top 3 priorities of your life. If it isn’t then it may be time to kick one of those other “not so important” priorities to the curb and let your health shine!
Something magical happens when your personal health is a top priority in your life…you find that you have TIME to focus on it! You not only find time, but you make it. And when time is carved out in your day for your health then it is no longer a matter of excuses, but motivation.
Are you motivated enough?
Motivation is another tricky one. It comes in all shapes and sizes and what motivates you may not motivate me. Some people are internally driven to exercise and keep their bodies healthy while others need a little external push. How do you know which one you are? Internal motivation is something that (as the name states) comes from within. It is a desire to do something, a feeling rather than a reward. Many triathletes, distance runners/bikers, and hobbyists fall under the category of being internally motivated. They aren’t doing it for fame, fortune or for any other outside reasons rather than simply wanting to. External motivation is something outside of your feelings. This motivation can be anything! Weight loss, dessert, friendship, fame, money, etc. are all examples of strong external motivators.
If you are not one of the lucky ones to be internally driven to exercise that’s ok! Your health can be used as a great motivator! Aging gracefully, being able to keep up with your kids (or grandkids), hiking, biking, and walking are all great reasons to change your priorities to include your physical health. When you are able to move like you want and do the things you want then that in itself turns into a motivator.
When you are motivated but don’t have as much time as you want
It happens! Even the best laid out plans hit speed bumps. Keeping some tools in your arsenal at the ready for those times is key. You can get a great workout in with a minimal amount of time as long as you do it right. A great guideline to follow is focusing on high intensity movements with short rest periods. To get the most bang for your buck you want to get your heart rate up and keep it up!
15 minute intervals
Complete each exercise for 45 seconds followed by 15 seconds of rest. Repeat for 5 rounds (15 minutes total)
This is an example of a short, but effective, workout that could be done with no equipment. Essentially you could complete this workout anywhere! The exercises can be subbed out for anything you’d like. Jumping exercises tend to work well at getting the heart rate up during these sets, but work within your means!
Here are a few resources full of bodyweight exercises that you can sub in for those above:
You almost always have time to exercise, it is up to you to find the motivation and desire to do so.
Director of Kinesiology and Gym Operations, HealthFit Gym