Written by Gurleen Khaira
According to The World Health Organisation, adults should have 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise or 75 minutes of high-intensity exercise per week. However, between work and chores, we all run out of time to do a workout. Partly caused by busy schedules, it is estimated that 1 in 4 adults globally do not exercise, and of course, we all know the health implications of this - cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and stiff joints to name a few! Here are some easy ways that you can fit in exercise to your busy schedule to improve your heart health and general well-being.
1. Make a timetable
Life can get pretty hectic. You have to go to work, do the school round, and get the shopping, amongst 100 other things. You may feel you have no time for exercise. But the truth is we make time for everything else, and to be too busy for something as vital for your health and self care isn’t wise. Now, I’m not saying you need to be a fitness guru, but simply scheduling 20 minutes a day (or whatever suits you) can make a big difference.
2. Do a morning workout
Sometimes you can have the best intentions to exercise during the day but then something comes up. To avoid unanticipated circumstances from getting in the way, you can try a morning workout before you start the day. Now, nobody likes getting up early in the morning, but sacrificing 30 minutes of sleep in the morning for a workout can help you meet your workout goals. Not only will your body thank you, but so will your mind as exercise is shown to help with brain health. A morning workout can help you feel more energised for the rest of your day, and studies actually show that exercise can help memory- it is in some sense a body and memory trainer!
3. Integrate exercise into your daily routine
For those of you who don't even like the sound of exercise - don’t think of it as exercise. Instead, integrate activity into your daily routine. For example, do you need to do the grocery shopping? Walk to the shops instead of taking the car. Or on the way to work in the morning, get off at an earlier subway stop and walk the rest of the way. Even simpler - park your car further away from your office and take the stairs. These small changes can give you the activity level you need, and you might not even realise you are exercising!
4. Keep a positive attitude
Exercise does not need to be a burden or strenuous task- it can be a fun activity to do with your friends. In the age of social media, it is easy to compare yourself to others’ fitness journey and feel unmotivated if you can’t achieve the same results. But remember, you are doing this for you! Set realistic fitness goals that you know you can achieve. This will encourage you to keep up your workouts. Super difficult workouts may be exciting for a week or so, but in the long term, you will exhaust yourself and feel demotivated. So, consider your goals and capabilities, and make a fitness plan accordingly. Remember: you can do it!