Pop quiz: Who do you think has more time to exercise and eat healthy? Is it working women? Stay at home moms? Singles? Maybe even men? Chances are that the category you picked is not the category YOU fall under. Why? Because “The grass is always greener on the other side”, or for our purposes, “Health is always easier on the other side”. Working women always say “If only I didn’t work…” Stay at home moms say “If only I wasn’t home all day and had to go to work…” Men say “Women have it so much easier…” And women claim the men don’t face the same challenges. The truth is, no matter what category you fall under, you are busy. No matter what category you fall under, you also have other things going on in your life, and health and fitness may not be number one on that list.
So what is the solution? The answer may be fitting health and fitness into life, ANY life. Here are some short cuts and tips. I hope that no matter what category you are in, you will find something on this list helpful, and most importantly, practical.
- Waiting time is opportunity time.
Stuck at a red light? Waiting at the checkout line in Shoprite? Use this time! Try contracting your abdominal muscles, and then releasing them. (In simple terms, suck in your belly and then let it out). Do the same with your glutes, too.
- Turn your office into a “gym”.
There are many different ways to get in a workout right at work. One way is to invest in a stability ball chair. This is a stability ball with back support. Sitting on this chair will activate your core muscles throughout the day, without you even doing anything. When you have a break, you can use this chair for actual stability ball exercises (which you can easily look up online). Another idea is to use the stairs, A LOT. I have a client who spends the first half hour of her lunch going up and down the stairs, and the second half hour eating her lunch. Now THAT’S a well deserved lunch! Another idea is leg raises. Sit on the chair, lift one leg about belly button height, hold for a second, and release without touching the floor. Repeat this 12 times, and then switch legs. This will firm and tone your quadriceps (the top of your thighs),
- Free time? There are other great sites besides facebook!
If you have some time to use the computer for your own purposes, utilize it to track and monitor your eating. There are many free sites such as my-calorie-counter.com and caloriesperhour.com where you can enter your foods and see how many calories you ate, and what your balance is for the day.
- Stay at home moms, MULTI TASK, MULTI TASK, MULTI TASK!
Put your baby on your belly and do some sit ups (Holding on to him of course), elevate your feet on to a couch while watching your kids play, and do a sit up, reaching as close to your toes as you can get, and then coming back down. Speaking of kids, have them join you for some fitness fun. Turn on music and dance together, jump rope or hula hoop together, or if they’re old enough, even do an exercise video with them.
- Who said salad has to come in a bowl?
People often say that it’s a hassle to bring a whole salad bowl or container to work, and I agree. My favorite veggie shortcut comes in the form of a sandwich bag. Simply put some cherry tomatoes, baby carrots, and celery sticks into a sandwich bag, and there are your vegetables. It doesn’t get any easier than that. Perfect for work, or for an outing.
If you found the time to read this article, you’re doing great. Now just look for more little opportunities in your daily busy life to incorporate healthy choices and ideas. Good luck, the results will be worth it!