Exercising while Short on Time

by Cassandra Merkling
(last updated July 27, 2009)

We have all used the excuse that we cannot exercise because we do not have enough time. Perhaps we work 14 hours a day. Or maybe we commute for hours at a time. Well, the good news is that you do not have to feel restricted by your schedule anymore. Exercises can be done during lots of other tasks during the day. Here are some examples of what and when you can do these exercises:

If you work with computers, you can start working out while you are working on your projects. Your legs are free to work while you are seated, so you can do leg lifts with your legs in different positions, and even sit on an exercise ball while you work instead of being on a chair. If you sit with your ankles and knees close together, you will get more of a workout by using your core muscles to balance yourself.

On breaks, you can do jumping jacks or jump rope to work up a sweat. Take a walk around the building or parking lot of the place where you work. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Ten minutes of stair climbing burns 100 calories, says one source. Walk to your coworkers if you want to communicate with them, instead of calling, radioing, or e-mailing them.

If you drive a lot, you can still do exercises. You can do isometrics and squeeze muscles one at a time for periods of ten seconds or more. And whenever you park, you can park extra far away from doors so you get some walking in where you otherwise would not.

When you are spending time with family, you can still get a workout by spending that time doing something physical, such as playing soccer or tag, or by jogging while pushing a stroller or wheelchair. You can give piggyback rides, or lift a child up and put her back down. You can even enlist a child to help you by providing resistance during leg lifts or extra weight on your feet when you do sit ups and make a counting game of it.

When doing your usual daily tasks, such as brushing your teeth, you can do lunges and squats. You can dance while you do housework. You do not even have to know how to do any particular moves. All you have to do is keep moving and throw in some wiggles every once in awhile.

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