Time is invaluable. We never seem to have enough of it. Working out is an essential healthy habit, so it makes sense to have some easy go-to habits to simplify your workout to save time, but not compromise your overall workout.
There are a few ways I’ve found that you can get in an awesome workout, and still have time to eat lunch for you’re a mid day exerciser, or make dinner if you prefer evening workouts. You can easily start some habits to simplify your workouts, to get in the habit of exercising 4-5 days a week, and still have plenty of time in your day to do everything else you need to get done.
If you are going to dedicate a block of time to visit the gym, you need to create a plan. When you arrive at the gym with no idea what you are going to do when you arrive, you often end up wasting a lot of time. Before you go, create a plan of attack to focus while you are there, preventing you from wandering around the gym trying to decide what to do.
Prepare to workout any time
Have a workout bag packed and ready to go with all the things you need. When you wait until the last minute to pack your bag, it’s easy to get distracted deciding on what to wear and possibly forgetting something essential. Keep your bag packed and ready for your next workout!
Combine your moves
You can simultaneously combine cardio and strength training to maximize your time spent and results in the gym. Try performing your strength training moves as a circuit, doing them quickly one after the other. This makes your heart rate stay elevated (the key to cardio) during your entire workout. You can do combo moves such as “squat and press”, “lunge and curl” or “plank and row” to utilize your time efficiently and keep your heart rate up.
Push up the intensity
Golias claims that short and intense workouts always outdo long and lifeless sessions. No amount of time is too short to get in a quick workout; whether it’s during a commercial break while watching TV or a 15-minute break at work. A few quick intense go-to exercises: jumping jacks, squats, crunches, burpees, push ups.
Make it quality over quantity
It’s not how many reps you complete or how many minutes your do on the treadmill, but how engaged you are during your workout. Shift your focus from watching the counter to effectively and efficiently doing the exercises. For strength training you can set a timer and perform each move slowly and correctly until the timer goes off. For cardio, pay attention to your form and breathing to keep your muscles and mind engaged the entire time.
You should never feel like you don’t have enough time to make exercise a daily habit. There are so many different ways to simplify your workout and fit exercise into your busy schedule on a consistent basis. You can even to turn everyday situations into bursts of exercise. Standing in line at the grocery store? Waiting to meet someone for lunch? Put those leg muscles to work with calf raises. Also, don’t be afraid to try something new. Is there a new class you’ve been wanting to try? Is one of your goals to run a 5k?
An added benefit of getting into a daily workout habit is the energy it provides during the day, as well as the ability to help you get a good night’s rest. Start small by adding in small amounts of cardio and strength training into your day when you can. If you can get into the gym, make it count: make a plan, up the intensity, and be effectively engaged the entire time. It’s simple, right? A simple workout plan for a simple new healthy habit.