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Struggling to Stay Active? Here’s How to Improve Your Fitness In 7 Easy Steps

26 July 2022

What images come to mind when you think of a ‘fit’ person? You probably imagine somebody who goes on a run before work, goes for a five-mile lunchtime walk, and spends over an hour in the gym at the end of the day.

For many of us, our lifestyles are simply too busy to accommodate hours and hours of exercise per day. But this doesn’t mean you can’t stay active.

We’ve assembled some tips to help you stay active with minimal time, equipment, and money.

1. Stand More

Sitting for long periods of time can be detrimental to long-term health. Even if you regularly do hour-long workouts, sitting for the rest of the day can still cause problems. To avoid the negative health impacts of a sedentary lifestyle, try to stand as regularly as possible.

Instead of sitting when travelling on public transport, stand instead. If you work at an office or from home, set an alarm on your phone to remind you to stand up at least once per hour.

Alternatively, opt for a standing desk or a cycling desk. Standing desks, such as this standing desk from Flexispot, allow you to stand or cycle at your desk to avoid the health impacts of sitting at a desk all day.

2. Try a 10-minute Morning Workout

If you find yourself short on time, try a 10-minute morning workout as part of your morning routine. Even if you’re in the kitchen waiting for the kettle to boil or your bread to toast, you can perform a few bodyweight exercises.

Try the following 10-minute morning workout to energise your body and boost your metabolism before beginning your workday.

● Do 10 squats

● Do 5 lunges on each leg

● Using a chair, do 10 tricep dips

● Hold a plank for 20 seconds, either on your knees or on your toes depending on your ability level

● Repeat.

3. Keep Home Exercise Equipment

No gym? No problem. If you don’t have the time or money for a gym membership, you can recreate a gym in the comfort of your own home.

If you have exercise equipment to hand, you’re more likely to work out. The more barriers to your workout you can remove, the easier it will be to work out regularly.

If you keep weights, resistance bands, and yoga mats in your home, you’ll be able to work out from any room in the house without the time required to get to the gym. Having equipment on hand will allow you to squeeze workouts in between meetings and household chores.

4. Get Active with Friends

One incredibly simple way to make fitness an easy part of your lifestyle is to organise fitness-based activities with friends.

Instead of meeting your friends and family at a coffee shop or pub, organise a walk, cycle, or run with your loved ones. That way, you can have fun together whilst getting fit. Plus, you’re more likely to take part in physical activity if there’s somebody else to keep you accountable.

Up for a challenge? Sign up for a half marathon or triathlon with a friend of a similar fitness level, and train together to reach your goals!

5. Try HIIT

HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training and consists of short bursts of intense activity. HIIT workouts are typically between 10 and 30 minutes long, so they’re an easy way to burn calories and give your metabolism a boost when you’re short on time.

HIIT workouts typically involve exercises such as lunges, burpees, star jumps, and mountain climbers repeated for a few reps with a break in between. Because of the intensity of the moves involved, HIIT workouts are guaranteed to improve your cardiovascular fitness.

6. Invest in A Fitness Watch

Wearable tech has seen a boom in sales over the last few years, and no item has been as popular as fitness watches. Many watches not only count steps, but also monitor how many calories are burned, how well you sleep, and even your blood oxygen levels.

Fitness watches can encourage you to take the stairs instead of the escalator or sleep for longer in order to get better metrics on your watch, therefore helping you be more active.

7. Walk Where Possible

Many of the short journeys we take every day are actually walkable. Next time you drive to a shop only a mile away, consider taking a quick 20-minute walk there instead. If you get the bus to work but walking takes the same amount of time, walk instead (at least occasionally).

The Bottom Line

Even if you live a busy lifestyle, it’s possible to make changes to add activity as a natural part of your day. You don’t need to join an expensive gym or spend hours a day exercising - naturally, incorporating movement into your lifestyle can yield huge results.