I think so many of us have the greatest of intentions when it comes to working out and being healthy. We plan fitting in time to exercise and we set goals to eat healthy but what happens? Life happens! The trick is to stick with our plans to be healthy regardless of what life brings our way because the truth is life isn’t going to slow down to make time for our workouts.
I have been attending college the last five years (I know, five years is FOREVER!!) and I learned quickly in my first semester that if I don’t make time for exercise and healthy eating it won’t get done. It is so much easier to eat fast food and skip a workout when you are busy studying. Life will never pause and make it easy for you to workout. It just won’t. For those days that I just could not make it to the gym, I came up with a few ways that I could get my heart rate up while staying on top of my schoolwork. I hope these little suggestions can help other students out there. Or maybe parents who are helping their children with homework and can’t get their full workout in.
1. Wall sits. I always had a lot of reading that I had to do in my major so I would do wall sits as I read. I would read a full page (or a few paragraphs at least) while doing a wall sit. Then I would take a break while I read another page and then go back to doing a wall sit on the next page. You get the idea. For those of you who don’t know what a wall sit is I will explain. You put your back up against a wall and act like you are sitting in a chair and the wall is the back of the chair. You want to sit as far down as possible, ideally you want your knees parallel with the ground.
2. Answer wrong and feel the burn! When I was studying for a test I would make flash cards. As I quizzed myself with the flash cards I would play a little game. Every time I answered a question wrong I made myself do some type of small workout. Sometimes it would be a 30 second plank or 50 jumping jacks. Something like that.
3. Whenever you read _____ do ______. This is another workout game that I played with myself . Here is how it works. When I was doing my assigned reading I would select a word or two that I knew would be in the reading quite often and whenever I read that word or phrase I would stop and do a certain number of sit ups or step ups or some other quick (but awesome) workout.
4. Take a break and go for a jog. Whenever I had a lot of different readings or assignments to do in one night I would take a five minute break when I finished one before starting the next and I would go for a quick run around my apartment complex. Or I would do a small set of some workout. The workout videos from the 12 week shape up challenge would be great to do because each video is only about five minutes.
5. Promise yourself a treat when you finish. I have a sweet tooth and one of my favorite ways to satisfy that sweet tooth (in a healthy way) is with a fruit smoothies. When I had a homework overload I would promise myself that when I was finished with all of the homework that I needed to I could make myself a delicious smoothie and enjoy it while doing something totally relaxing and not related to school at all. Like watch an episode of Friday Night Lights. If you have kids that need to get homework done, this can be a great motivation for them to complete it. And you can have some family bonding time after they finish as you drink your smoothies and relax.
These are just some small ideas but they are a great way to get a little extra workout in for those times when life just doesn’t seem to give you any time to workout.
How do you fit in a workout on those days that life is going a million miles a minute?