People have all sorts of reasons why they can’t exercise more…or should I say excuses? Working out doesn’t have to break the bank, take tons of time, or cause you to stress more. Working out is about priorities and putting yourself behind your efforts.
Working out does not have to cost a dime. Many spend quite a bit on poor food choices, and then complain they have no money to spend on health. How much is your cable bill? What’s it doing for your body? What about your trips to the mall, eating out, the bar – how much are your habits costing you? Are they still worth the extra weight, poor sleep, added stress? See below for ideas.
Working out does not have to take much time. Ever sat through an episode of a TV show only to think it was dumb? Why did you waste your time? How about when you sit through one and because it ended you watch the one right after it? Half of many TV programs are commercials, so even if you like the show, you could do some activities during commercials, or better yet, you could do activity through the whole show! There is a half hour of activity and you did not spend any money or have to find any extra time.
Working out does not have to be a huge change. If you start it will snowball. What about working activity into your life? Quit driving around the parking lot looking for the closest spot – there is your extra half hour of time. Park as far away as you can and walk in. Take the stairs instead of the elevator whenever possible. Walk instead of drive, sometimes it’ll take you less time to walk, than to get in your car, start it up, move it, sit at the stop lights, move through traffic, and find another spot to park. Get wild buy a bike. If you don’t need a parking pass for your car – there is your extra money. (Worried about winter biking, there are many who bike all year long, and I am sure they could help you get started. Not to mention the cool fat tires you’ll get to use.)
It is no one’s responsibility to get you moving. It is no one’s responsibility to make sure you are choosing actions that correspond with your goals, and it is no one’s responsibility to make sure you follow through with your goals – its all you. Make the choice today to be accountable for your actions and in control of your choices and ultimately your health.
Movement burns calories, helps you feel stronger, gives you energy, helps you sleep, the list goes on. There are a million reasons why you should move more. Begin by adding more movement into your day everyday and then go from there.
Imagine picking up your grandchildren with out wincing in pain, or walking a whole round of golf. Imagine running after your children on the trail and catching them – not that you wouldn’t let them win. Imagine playing a game of backyard football and not hurting so bad the next day you are confined to the couch. Imagine having the strength to get the milk off the bottom shelf of the refrigerator and reaching up for a glass without worry. Imagine sleeping through the night, or life with less stress. You can do these things and more. You just have to want to move!
Begin by adding in activity all day long – park and walk, run your errands literally, plant a garden, spring clean the house, etc. Then begin adding activity with more intensity. Walk with purpose, add intervals into your regular cardio routine, add strength training (or cardio) if you don’t already do one or the other. It is a good idea to meet with a personal trainer who can help you determine what your exercise routine should look like to reach your fitness goals. (See 5 Reasons to Hire a Trainer from a previous post).
Set your sights on what type of healthy life you’d like to live. Are you looking to add strength, lose weight, gain endurance, reduce stress? Let your vision be your guide to moving more every day!
Many people are strapped for time. Adding a workout in may be more stressful on the short term so what is the health conscious person to do when they want to workout but circumstances are preventing it?
It’s not often I let the words “circumstances are preventing” but lets face it – life happens. We all have situations that pop up unexpectedly and throw off our best laid plans. One way to deal with life is to have a plan to deal with unexpected situations. Think through your goals, your routines, and possible obstacles. Think about how you will work around those twists in your fitness routines. If after the best planning you are still thrown for a loop try using METS.
METS stands for metabolic equivalents. These are units of energy used to measure how much “work” our body is doing. Work can be anything from vacuuming to sleeping to running a 5k. Each activity is assigned a MET. This MET value lets you know approximently how hard you are working. By tracking your METS you may find you are able to add cardiovascular work into your daily life activities without adding more time to your day.
Here’s a link to a MET activity chart and explanation of how a MET is calculated.
*NOTE: METS are based on a VO2MAX value for most people. Because it is a value for most people it is an estimate of work for you. Also, if you have specific goals in mind METS may not be the right way to accomplish them. See a personal trainer or your health care person for more information on what is right for you.
Products to Support Your Health Journey:
Try tracking your movement and exercise to make sure you are on track to meet your goals.