10 Ways to Sneak in a Little Exercise

I cannot tell you how many times I have started an exercise routine. I have tried walking, weight training, P90X and jogging. Oh how I hate jogging. I seem to do well for the first week or two. Then life happens, and I stop.

It really gets to me more than I like to say. It gives me the sense that I cannot stick to anything, so the frustration mounts. Not only are the food craving difficult sometimes, but add to that the horrible will power that I have had recently to exercise. I had to find a way to take this in small steps. Steps that I could do every day to give myself a win. You know that if you’re constantly failing, it only breeds failure. On the opposite viewpoint, the more you are winning, even in the small things, the more you will feel that you are moving forward, giving yourself the umph to keep trying.

So how do we get in the exercise that we really need during the day? Here are a few things to consider.

1. Park at the far end of the parking lot to force yourself to walk a little farther

This has the potential for giving you quite a few more steps during the day, especially if you park in a large parking lot.

2. Take the stairs instead of the elevator

Now if you work in a high rise, don’t make this one of those constant failures. Give yourself some grace.

3. Stand up at your desk while you’re at work

There are standing desks now. Can you believe it? All of those years of standing at my kitchen counter while working on my laptop, I was actually ahead of my time.

4. Sit on a balance ball instead of a chair

It will work your core during the course of the day.

5. Do a few push-ups during the day

It doesn't take very long at all and it will build your strength.

6. Walk to the mailbox instead of sending your significant other

In our house, when the mail shows up, it’s almost like Christmas. The kids (and my husband) love to go to the mailbox for the mail, but just those extra steps can add up.

7. Play with your children / grandchildren

Need I say more? They will wear you out!

8. Move while at work

Get up and walk away from your desk for a break. Take that coffee break in the break room, cafe or cafeteria. Stand up and move. Do a few squats or lunges every hour or two, while you’re working.

9. Go the long way

Take the longest route to deliver something at work. Depending on the layout of your office, this could rack up some steps.

10. Laugh

Sounds crazy, I know, but laughing actually uses muscles. You know how you ache sometimes after a big laugh? You have used muscles as you laughed.

One way to keep track of your extra movement is to invest in a heart rate monitor like a Fitbit. You can keep track of your steps during the day and begin to challenge yourself to do better. More than that, you can challenge your friends and family to see who will get the most steps during the day.

Whatever it takes to get you moving a little more is the best first step you can take. Then keep moving the bar just enough to give you a challenge, but not so much that you are likely to quit. As you know, we cannot afford to just quit. You can do it. Keep your chin up and keep moving.

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