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How To Find Time to Exercise With a Busy Schedule

Updated on December 5, 2012

No Time to Exercise?

If you're like most people, it can be challenging to find time to exercise. We juggle so much in our fast paced world today--both parents working, kids, school, activities, pets, and so on. Unfortunately the one thing we tend to neglect is exercise, which has a negative impact on our health and causes us to age prematurely.

Here we'll discuss tips and tricks to make time to exercise, find time throughout your day to workout, how to workout with a busy schedule, workout tips for busy moms and much more to help get you started losing weight, feeling better and having fun!

Workout at the office
Workout at the office

Exercise Tips For Busy People

How do I find time to exercise?

Why exercise? The better question is why wouldn't we exercise? Study after study has shown the importance of exercise to help maintain our youth and our health. With so many Americans overweight, obviously we're all doing something wrong and that something is a lack of physical activity. Our bodies are not meant to sit in a cubicle all day-they're designed for movement. However, in our fast paced modern world many of us struggle with balancing work, home, relationships, etc. Unfortunately the one thing that tends to be neglected most often is our health.

As the saying goes, if you don't use it, you'll lose it! And just because you're not sick doesn't mean you're healthy. So if you've got a busy schedule, no more excuses! Here are some sneaky little tricks to squeeze exercise into a busy day. Don't look for extra hours in your schedule--look for ways to sneak exercise in here and there throughout the day.

Early morning exercise
Early morning exercise

1. Exercise First Thing in the Morning

Workout before you start your day

Exercise first thing in the morning – Life happens. Things get in the way. You can expect the unexpected to occur. So what's the best way to avoid missing your workout? Do it first thing when you wake up. Once it's done, it's done! Now you can go about the rest of your day knowing that you started your day off taking care of YOU first.

If there's simply no way you can exercise before work, exercise immediately afterward before you go home. If you go home first, even with the best of intentions, you're much more likely to have something “more important” come up or just decide to skip. At the end of the day, you're probably physically worn out and mentally fatigued and it just may not happen. So avoid this obstacle by working out before you do anything else!

Workout partners
Workout partners

2. Exercise With a Friend

Find an exercise buddy

Nothing beats having a dependable workout partner (also known as an accountability buddy) to help keep you accountable. If we wake up knowing that a friend is going to be waiting at the gym for us, we're much more likely to get out of bed and go. There's something motivating about having someone else in it with you. You'll feed off each other's successes. You'll motivate each other. When one falls, the other will be there to pick you up.

So find a friend and get started! If you don't know of anyone, you can always check the free sites listed below. Also, don't forget about your 4-legged friends! A dog makes an amazing workout buddy.

Free sites to help locate a workout partner:

Workout at the office
Workout at the office

3. Exercise While You're at Work

Workout over your lunch break

If you're searching for extra hours in the day to workout, chances are you aren't going to find them. For many of us, there is a constant barrage of more important things flying at us. So the best way to overcome that obstacle is to squeeze in a nice workout during your breaks or lunch break at the office.

Some progressive companies are finally realizing that healthier employees mean greater productivity, and therefore have fitness centers at work or offer discounted memberships at local gyms. If that is not available to you through your employer, so what! Use that 15 minute break to walk laps around your building. Walk up and down the stairs for 10 minutes of your lunch break. Stand up and down on your tippy toes while you're on a phone call. Squeeze in those abdominals while you're sitting at your desk. Just get up and move!

If you want it bad enough, those obstacles and excuses will begin to melt away just like fat will once you start working out consistently.

Exercise by taking the stairs
Exercise by taking the stairs

4. Take the Stairs

Skip the elevator/escalator and take the stairs instead

Walking up and down stairs is an amazing form of exercise. It hits your legs, your calves, and the glutes. While it may not seem like much if you take the stairs one day, imagine that little bit of effort and multiply that times 365 days in a year. As you can see, it adds up quickly.

Once you make this a habit, you'll slowly start to notice the results over the next few weeks. So no more waiting for that elevator--walk around the corner to the stairs and huff it!

Park far away
Park far away

5. Park Far Away

Park at a distance and walk to your destination

Most of us will drive around for several minutes looking for the closest parking spot we can find. What a waste of time and gas! Instead, look for a parking spot a considerable distance from your destination and park it. Hop out and briskly walk inside.

Just as with the last example, this may not seem like you're accomplishing much at first. But once this becomes habit and you do it repeatedly, it will really begin to add up.

So no more turning on your blinker and waiting for that car to back out of a close spot--park far away and walk!

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    • profile image

      Marshall019 5 years ago

      I love the first two pics on this lens. Really fun!

    • RockInRio profile image

      RockInRio 5 years ago

      I think that people who are in a constant hurry are not able accomplish that much quality results, comparing to individuals who have the same amount of work but are able too see things from a higher perspective and not been caught up in the state of rush.

    • Wendy L Henderson profile image

      Wendy Henderson 5 years ago from PA

      I joined the community gym in December and have been working our 3-4 times a week. I feel so much better than I did before! :)

    • lbrummer profile image

      Loraine Brummer 5 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      My New Years resolution! I should be able to find something here.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I workout at work during my lunch and I try to get in any extra activity during my day, like taking the stairs. I like to watch TV and movies, and I workout when I do that too. I do stretches throughout the day as my movement to break up long periods of sitting. If I can't get in a real workout during the day for some reason, I'll get up several times and run up the stairs at work. We have 9 flights, so running up them gets your heart racing!