One summer evening my cousin berated herself, publicly on Facebook, for only getting in 15 minutes of exercise. I commented on her post, assuring her that she should be proud of the fact that she is getting any exercise at all. It is my belief that any amount of exercise, over and beyond our normal daily routine, is beneficial to our health, energy levels, appearance, and our general outlook on life. While I am not speaking to you as a professional fitness coach or physical trainer, I feel confidant that this is true due to my own personal experience.
Don’t lose hope of getting into shape and losing that belly fat just because you cannot work 30 to 45 minutes of exercise into your daily routine. Five minutes of exercise, here and there, is better than no exercise at all. Let’s look at a few ways we can add a little bit of exercise into an incredibly busy schedule.
- One super easy way of adding a stomach flattening exercise into your daily routine is to simple suck your gut in and hold it for a count of eight, or as long as you can, every time you notice that your stomach muscles are relaxed. Eventually, your stomach muscles will be trained into that position, you will not have to repeat the exercise as often, and you’ll notice that you have a flatter tummy.
- Wherever you’re headed throughout the day, park at the far end of the parking lot and take that short hike to the storefront or office door. Of course, it is always a good idea to be very vigilant while walking through a parking lot so that you do not fall victim to a careless driver or someone who believes they need whatever you have on your person more than you do.
- When visiting more than one store in a shopping center walk from store to store, dropping your packages off at your car between each treasure hunt.
- Turn on some energetic music and run, dance, or skip from room to room as you attend to your chores. If this has the same effect on you that it does me, you’ll not only receive a welcomed burst of energy but you’ll have a smile on your face and in your heart.
- Stop for a minute and do a few stretches throughout your busy day. For me, this tiny exercise routine relieves stiff joints and achy muscles when I’ve been sitting at my desk far too long.
- While working at your home computer, take moments here and there to throw a ball for your dog or run over to your child or spouse and give him or her a great big hug. Not only will this simple activity give you a burst of energy, it will likely give both you and your dog, child, or spouse a greater sense of well-being. Just the thought of what fun this little burst of exercise will be for you and your loved ones delivers a smile to my face.
- Now drop down and give me 8, fitness soldier! I just got down on the floor and did a set of 8 crunches and it only took me about a minute.
- When I take a bathroom break, I’ll often do a few pushups against my vanity counter-top.
- If possible, when you take a phone call, get up from your desk and walk around the room. You’re aching and stiff body will thank you once it limbers up a bit.
- Take a break and go for a walk around the block. The fresh air and sunshine will do you good and you just might encounter an entertaining and playful squirrel along your journey. I realize this one will take a little more time, but you deserve a break from your busy schedule. Besides, the energizing effect of a nice walk on a beautiful day will likely increase your productivity anyway; and it might seem that you’ve lost no time at all.
It’s really not that difficult to add a little bit of exercise into your busy life, as long as you realize you don’t have to go to a gym of devote large segments of time to your exercise routine. Once you’ve started reaping the benefits of a little exercise, you might decide to treat yourself to longer exercise sessions. Until then, just take a minute here and there to get a little exercise; and I strongly suspect that you’ll feel healthier, fitter, more beautiful, and prouder than you will with no exercise at all.