This article is part of our “Workout Wednesday series” geared towards business professionals. It will help solve Health and Wellness issues in the office, and top experts will help guide you towards a resolution that works best for you.
“With a ten minute walk you improve your mood, reduce your fatigue, and feel more energetic.” -Julia Sweet
Although experts argue back and forth about the exact amount of time each day one should devote to exercise, some form of exercise is always better than none. The biggest challenge facing individuals in today’s fast paced, overly accommodating society is finding the right time and place to exercise at all. Former Cheerleader for the New England Patriots, Fitness Instructor, and Host and creator of “Fitness Mom” Julia Sweet explains how as technology makes our life easier; we must make more of an effort to get moving. Mark Twain once said, “Anytime I have the urge to exercise, I lie down until the feeling passes”. However Mark Twain also did not have the convenience of ordering his writing materials on Amazon, transferring money electronically to purchase those materials, and then driving his car down the lane to retrieve them; all without more than a few shot clicks and limited physical exertion. Times have changed, and our attitudes must change with them.
So how can we make the most of our workout without detracting from our busy daily lives? The answer is simple: make a plan, form a routine and experiment to find what fits your schedule and lifestyle best.
1) Create a reasonable goal.
Do you want to reduce your blood pressure, lose weight, or simply gain energy? Either way, start small. Health experts recommend at least some form of exercise every day, whether that simply is an extra walk around the block or taking the stairs. Start with smaller goals and work your way up. Making too lofty of goals early on can sometimes result in failure and discourage future attempts to enact exercise routine.
2) Make a plan to enact that goal.
Getting exercise each day does not mean you have to run a marathon or exhaust yourself. If your goal is to lose weight, plan to take 10 minutes out of your lunch break to walk around the block or take the stairs rather than the elevator every morning. If you work in an office, try shifting positions every so often to avoid sitting comatose in your comfy swivel chair.
3) Pick the best time to incorporate your plan.
Once you have a goal and a plan, pick a time that works for your schedule and lifestyle to enact that plan. There are benefits and drawbacks to exercising any time of day:
|Morning||Burn fat faster||Become tired faster|
|After Lunch||Avoid the after lunch tired feeling||Inconvenience of work and daily responsibilities|
|Night||Less likely to burn out or pull a muscle||Burn fewer calories|
According to fitness and health reporter , individuals are four times more likely to exercise right away in the morning than they are if the put off their plans until later in the day. For those of us who are not morning people, finding the right time can be the determining factor in the success of your goal.
4) Transform your goal into a habit.
Once you have made a goal, formed a plan, and selected the time that works best for you stick to it! For any workout plan to have a lasting effect, it must be one that becomes habitual. Every single time we neglect our goal makes it easier to neglect that goal in the future. It takes an estimated 21 days to make a habit however it takes much longer to engrain that habit healthily and sustainably into our lives. Dedication is the key. The only truly successful workout plan is one that becomes not so much a plan as a part of your daily routine.
5) Advertise your goal to stay accountable.
Personal goals have their place in our lives, but this place does not include issues involving our health. Sharing your goals with family members, friends, and coworkers will not only prove your dedication but it will hold you accountable to that goal. Tell your coworkers exactly what your goal is and how and when you plan to work toward that goal every day.
There is no denying that exercise is essential. However, forming healthy exercise practices is not easy in our convient world today. In order to stay healthy, happy, and in shape most of us will need a plan of action and someone to hold us accountable to that plan.