How to find time for training when you have work, children, and household responsibilities? Even if you are lucky enough to find time for sports, sooner or later, school holidays, children's illnesses, or work crises come and eat up those extra hours along with your best intentions. Sound familiar, right? And each time, the belief that it can change becomes less and less.
Anything is possible. Even if you do not have time for long sessions in the gym, you can be physically active and improve your health by showing a little creativity in planning your day. We offer some life hacks.
Review your daily routine
Even if your day is filled with meetings and other things, everyone can find 5-10 free minutes to take care of themselves.
If you have a sedentary lifestyle, it is essential to start somewhere, even if it is minimal. Take a five-minute walk every hour. You may think that this is not enough, but scientists have something to argue. A 2020 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that those who take 8000 steps a day have a 51% lower risk of dying from any cause than those who take 4000 steps or less.
What else can you do?
- Walk up and down the stairs;
- Park your car farther away from the office/home or get off one stop earlier;
- Do a set of squats while watching TV;
- Be more active during walks with pets, etc.
- Outsource tasks to your assistant, colleagues, or services that can help you do your work. For example, if you're a student, you can find a fast essay writing service and free time for yourself.
- Do not forget to praise yourself for any workout, even if it is small and does not seem impressive to you. Small steps to a healthy lifestyle are better than their complete absence.
Another important rule - learn to delegate. Take a look at your household chores. Can the children wash the dishes by themselves? Is your husband able to cook dinner two times a week? What can you delegate to others to go to the gym on the way home or run in the evening? You may not be the only person who can do everything you do now.
Use the calendar
The chances of sabotaging your workouts are much less if you put them in your to-do list/diary / Google Calendar. Choose the best time for exercise in your schedule and distribute sports for the whole week. This will at least prevent you from planning something else for this time and will also serve as a good reminder.
Get rid of distractions
Smartphones are the most common "time eaters." You may not notice how often you check your messenger, browse the news feed and Stories on social networks, watch videos on YouTube, etc. But in fact, it can take too many resources that you could spend on something more practical, including sports.
Each phone has an opportunity to see your screen time and how much you spend on specific programs. Suppose the indicators exceed your norm, set limits using special applications such as Social Fever, SPACE, and MyAddictometer. They will help to limit the time spent on the device and free it for what you need.
What seems like a lack of time is often a lack of motivation. How to force yourself to exercise regularly? Try to consider a monetary incentive. Sign up and pay in advance for a yoga workshop, book a few sessions with a personal trainer, or invest money in participating in a sporting event you must prepare for.
Another option is to arrange with one of your friends or acquaintances to train together. Emotional involvement, accountability to others, and the unwillingness to let the other person down are good incentives. Create a standard chat room to share the process and results and support and guide each other.
Choose a sport that brings pleasure.
Anyone who perceives workouts as drudgery will do everything to make them fall out of his schedule. Find the optimal sport that arouses interest and desire to return again and again. Perhaps it will be running, Pilates or Zumba. Or maybe the whole problem is that you do not like to work out alone? Then team sports or group classes come to the rescue.
Train in the morning
Get up half an hour earlier than your family members. Morning workouts have fewer distractions, unlike the day and yesterday, when there are too many things to do and commitments.
A 2019 study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that morning exercise improves attention, visual learning, and decision-making ability. So, if you have problems with concentration, morning workouts can be a good prevention.
In addition, according to a 2012 study in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, after moderate exercise in the morning (for example, 45 minutes of walking), participants showed an increase in physical activity over the next 24 hours.
- Change your habits. Walk more. Take less than 8 thousand steps per day.
- Keep a diary or calendar, and include training in your to-do list, so that you can cross it off with pleasure as done at the end of the day.
- Check how much time you spend on applications and social networks. Perhaps the problem lies in them.
- Find motivation and like-minded people, and choose a sport that pleases you.
- Give preference to morning workouts, as there are fewer distractions during this period.
- Remember that the best time is now! We always find time for what we want. Do you want to be healthy and look good? Make an effort to make it happen. It is enough to start with small steps that will lead to changes.
- Combining study and sports - tips for students to make more time for sports.
- Other articles on planning an exercise program
- Read about our free training diary