One of my most common client concerns is that they don't always have time to work out on their own, in between training sessions. This is a very legitimate concern and when I hear what some people's schedules are like, I'm amazed they manage at all. Unfortunately there is no way for us to add in an extra hour to our day, without losing much needed sleep! So we need to make the most of every workout opportunity we can.
When life becomes too hectic for me to hit up the gym I do what I call "Power workouts." This basically means, I work out in little bits at a time, a set here and there, throughout the day.
A few examples of typical "Power Workouts":
- Speed walk wherever you go. Sounds obvious but it truly makes a difference. For example. Say someone that weighs 2oolbs walked 1 mile at a rate of 2mph. They will have burned 91 calories. If that same person pumped up the pace to 4.0 they will have burned 127 calories. In a week the slow walker burns 637 while the speed walker burns 889 calories. Just from walking 15 mins a day!
- Sometimes I find myself with a brief period of waiting around in the middle of a hectic day. Waiting for water to boil, waiting for a call-back etc. During those times I do body weight exercises. Squats in as many sets of 15-20 reps that I can, push ups in sets of 15-20, calf raises in 3 sets of 20 (toes in, out and forward) and crunches in sets of 20-25 reps. It doesn't take much to feel an exercise the next day!
- Health conscious companies are beginning to open fitness facilities on-site, have corporate membership rates with a local gym, or even have a hired trainer come to the office to train small groups on lunch break. Look in to these programs and if your office doesn't offer any of the above ask co-workers if they would like to go in on a small group trainer, or even a 15 minute lunch break power walk.
- Have you ever heard of a swear jar? Well during hectic times it's probably pretty common to curse quite a bit. Not that I do this, but I know it happens:P So instead of dropping change in to a jar, drop and give yourself 20. It's an unconventional suggestion but hey, humour can get you through a tough day. You might as well make it benefit you physically as well!
- Even people with the busiest schedules have some down-time in the evening. I'm not saying you should skip your favourite TV program or not read your magazines. What you can do is stretch in the evening while you are enjoying normally sedentary leisure activities. Stretching is usually forgotten about, especially when people are busy but a good stretch in the evening before bed will make you sleep great, feel totally refreshed in the morning and completely ready for the new day.
Life gets hectic but never allow your schedule to take over caring for your bod. A couple of crazy weeks here and there should not set back all of your hard earned efforts in the gym. There are always small things you can do to keep up with your fitness routine until you have a spare hour or two to get back in the gym.
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