Hacks to Move More
Most of us don’t get the chance to spend an entire day being active and moving around, because of, y’know, responsibilities, so it’s important to figure out ways you can still get moving for your health. We have tons of excuses: we’re too busy, we don’t have workout equipment, we don’t have the time or patience. The truth is, if you’re serious about getting more active and fit you can find creative ways to get going.
Set a timer. Have an alarm on your phone set to go off every hour, two hours, or whatever you prefer, that will alert you to get up and do some exercising. This will make sure you get consistent movement throughout the day. Make your goal something like 20 burpees, 10 jumping jacks, 10 pushups. Make sure they’re exercises you can realistically do, or find a place to do. If you find yourself unable to do them because of the setting, you’ll just start skipping these workouts, and you’ll never get moving. Even if you’re unable to get in these workouts, the least you can do is take a quick break to get up and walk around for a few minutes, and a few minutes of walking is far better than a few minutes of sitting!
Take the long way. Most of us rush around on a constant crunch for time trying to find the shortest routes, but you’ll actually get more movement in if you take the long way. Instead of the elevator, take the stairs. Instead of grabbing that front-row parking spot, park at the back of the lot. It can actually add up to make a huge difference in your day. Sure, it takes more time, but nothing comes without a little extra work.
Multi task. There are tons of things we do that can easily be done while moving, yet we continue to sit down and do them. Instead of sitting down to have a snack, go for a walk and eat at the same time. Instead of sitting down to watch tv, get up and do some jumping jacks. You can even make some progress and get things done by moving around. Clean! You almost never sit when you’re cleaning, and you’ll get the benefits of both a clean living space and some movement into your day. Get something else done while you move.
Distract yourself. The truth is, some people just do not like working out. But that’s okay! There are ways to make it more bearable. The best way to do this is to distract yourself with something you are interested in, because it gives you incentive to continue. Maybe you don’t always have the time to catch up on your favorite show, there’s a book you really wanted to read, etc. Treat yourself to a new show or audiobook while you work out. Since this is something you are actually interested in, it’s a good distraction from the physical workout. It’ll also make your workout less boring (a huge complaint). Music is fun, but there’s not a lot of mental stimulation going on. A good audiobook, tv show, or movie will engulf your mind and get you invested. Time will go by quicker, you won’t be as bored or focused on the discomfort of working out, and if the chapter or episode is really good, you won’t want to stop your workout until it’s finished!
DIY your equipment. Another common barrier from working out is that you may not have any equipment like weights. Weights are just that — weight. You don’t need special barbell or shape to get the same workout, you just need some equivalent weight. Get creative and use things you already have. You can use cans of food or pots and pans, or if you go grocery shopping, use a basket instead of a cart to get in a quick arm workout. You’ll no longer be able to use this excuse when you can use things you already have!
- Shannon Kaszuba