Even if you have complete freedom over your schedule, it can be difficult to squeeze in a workout. One of the most popular resolutions is to improve health and fitness, but by the end of January, most of us are burnt out from the stress of fitting in a workout. Don’t beat yourself up about this; instead, be proactive about making time for exercise. Here are great ways make exercise a part of your lifestyle to keep that 2014 resolution.
Whether you’ve got a conference call or an in-person meeting, there’s really no reason why that can’t be a walking meeting. Meet at a park or near the beach, and offer up a “walking meeting” to your client to ensure they’re prepared with sensible shoes. Meetings often take hours, often sitting in conference rooms, munching on snacks; time that is much better spent on your feet! You can’t always schedule walking meetings outside, especially when it’s raining or freezing, but that shouldn’t stop you in terms of conference calls. Find an indoor track or hit the treadmill with your cell phone and ear buds. Grab a pedometer to measure your distance, and you’ll be surprised how far you can walk in an hour or two!
Regular swimmers can swim a full mile in about 35 minutes, which makes for a very quick workout. If you’re just a beginner, plan to swim for about 20-30 minutes and the distance will get further and further as you progress. Either way, a 30-minute swim still leaves plenty of time for showering and change afterwards, and it’s a great way to break up the monotony of the office.
Early Gym Classes
You’d be surprised how easy it is to bond with a stranger at a 5am spin class. Start going to a morning class that meets twice a week and you’ll be so glad to have a workout complete before you get to the office! You can probably fit in yoga, pilates, barre, and spin classes, and then you have an excuse to buy cute apparel and gym bags! If you can convince a friend to join you, that’s even better! If you make Tuesdays and Thursdays your gym days, you won’t be tempted into Monday or Wednesday night happy hours – saving you even more time for sleep and exercise!
If it’s a bike-able distance, get yourself a backpack for work essentials and a change of clothes, and plan to bike at least 3 times a week. Another option is public transit. This is not possible for everyone, but if you can find a way to get to your office for a reasonable price in a reasonable length of time via public transit, do it. When you take public transportation, you are normally forced to walk more in-between stations and stops. Plus, you will have plenty of time on the train to read or catch up on emails. If you are able to take that early morning workout class, you can even take a short little nap on your way to work, or use that time to eat a quick and healthy breakfast – like banana-oat muffins or a hardboiled egg. If you don’t have public transit options, you can make little changes in your commute by parking half a mile from your office, or at the very back of the parking lot. Every little bit counts!
Workout Happy Hour & Social Events
Everybody loves a good happy hour, but why not make it a workout hour instead? Whether you’re running, walking, biking, or doing a mat workout, choose a social workout that encourages conversation. You can also make weekend workout dates, such as a day hike with friends and family, or a trip out to a lake. Your friends will hardly notice the lack of a cocktail when you’re catching up on the day’s events, and the hormones you’ll release from exercise are much better than those affected by alcohol!