At the start of every year many of us vow to exercise more often. Despite the best intentions this objective may have already started to slide by the wayside – some studies show just 12% of people stick to their New Year’s resolutions. When it comes to exercise resolutions the common culprit for not sticking to them is this: “I haven’t got enough time.”
According to the 2010 Zurich – Heart Foundation Heart Health Index, lack of time is the most common barrier for why people don’t change their behaviour, particularly for women under the age of 40.
It makes sense that working mums would be among those who cite lack of time as a barrier to exercising daily. As a working mum myself, I have found making time for daily exercise difficult. That’s why it has taken me almost four years to work out how to achieve it (once I had some sleep!)
Here are four easy steps to make exercise part of your daily, busy life:
If you don’t enjoy exercise, you’re doing it wrong
Find something you enjoy. Yes, you should get your heart pumping but you don’t have to for every session. Try an easier yoga session before bedtime for a relaxing wind down or a dance session in front of the TV in the morning. If you choose exercise you enjoy, you will be more likely to go back for more, more often.
Block out time in your diary
Schedule an exercise session seven days a week. Like any appointment, book exercise at a time that suits you and allows for work, family and life in general. Whether it’s 5am or 7pm, make it work for you. You might even start to forgo sleep ins on the weekend to get in your exercise for the day.
But it’s wet/cold/raining and I have kids!
Can’t get out of the house with the kids as it’s too hot/cold/wet? You don’t have to.
There are so many YouTube videos available these days for a range of workouts including yoga, strength sessions, boot camp classes and Zumba that it is easier than ever to exercise from home. Exercise DVDs are another great way to get motivated to exercise indoors. Setting the kids up for breakfast before I hit Play on YouTube has been a good way for me to get my workouts done in the morning.
It’s not all about go hard or go home
Don’t get hung up on the intensity of the workouts. Some days will be better than others. There will be days where the kids just want to lie on you while you’re doing sit ups or you only have 15 minutes before you get everyone ready for the day. Start with the aim to achieve 10 minutes. See how far you get. Anything is better than nothing. You will probably surprise yourself and keep going!
I’m always on the lookout for tips to fit my exercise in. What are your tips for regular exercise?