Well life has, is and will be hectic up until Friday. I’m in the middle of a week long intensive unit for uni (love intensives because the whole unit only goes for a week and then you’re done) and I’m really enjoying it thus far. The unit is so cruisy- who would of thought a leisure and recreation unit would be Oh what does it have to do with teaching? I don’t know but it was an elective and an intensive so I’ll take it. So after I spend all day at uni I come home and do my study/homework for it, go to the gym, make dinner, eat dinner, pack lunch for the next day, then head to bed- living the life. Which is also why I haven’t been posting as often as I want. However, I plan to make up for that with a mid-week recipe post (fingers crossed it works) soon. Food and I’m forgiven right? Haha.
Being this busy (which is probably typical for many people) got me thinking how people make time for healthy eating and exercise. For me (cause I’m anal) it is a priority but for a lot of people it is. It also helps that I am in love with the exercise I do and I love healthy food so I will make the extra effort to do it. However, I do know that for many people this may not be the case, so I wanted to offer a helping hand with some tips and suggestions for healthy eating and exercise when you’re busy.
Think you can talk your boss into this one? Haha.
This one may seem hard because really who has the time? But it could be easier than you think. Exercise doesn’t have to be a formal affair or a long workout. Incidental exercise, which is exercise you can do informally during everyday life, is a great way to get you moving. And hay once you get the blood pumping you may actually feel like heading to the gym after. Here are a few ways to get incidental exercise in:
- Take the stairs (duh)
- Walk or bike for transportation.
- If you choose to drive, park further away or walk further than normal to get your lunch.
- Take the kids to the park and play with them.
- House cleaning (don’t give me that look!).
- Head out for a night on the town- and hit the dancefloor
- Do cute quirky exercises whilst you drive, stand in line, sit at your desk etc.
- Bring the groceries in- one bag at a time!
Some quick more literal exercise methods include:
- Doing 4 minute TABATA high intensity circuits.
- Doing short stunts of exercise multiple times throughout the day.
Other suggestions include:
- Do something physical that you love. Knowing you will be doing something you enjoy is instant motivation.
- Chose a social sport- you get to socialise and exercise! Double whammy. You are also committed and therefore are more likely to go and not let down your team etc.
- Have a workout buddy- someone who will cream you if you wuss out (haha not really)
- Get some at home workout dvds, videos, online resources etc. Now you can never complain about travel time
- Prioritise exercise in your life- this is what I do. On top of absolutely loving it, I make sure I know how important exercise is to me. Please though, don’t take this to the extreme- life does come up and exercise will occasionally have to take a back seat.
This is a toughie because with so many cheap and convenient (and not so healthy mind you) options out there sometimes we just wanna say ‘stuff it’. Here’s a few tips to make it fit into your busy lives:
- If take-away or fast food is your only option choose healthier alternatives.
- Organise your meals at the beginning of the week. This means cooking bulk amounts of vegies, rice etc. And then store, freeze/refrigerate and reheat as you need it.
- Prep your food BEFORE- I do this the night before because I know the last thing I want to do the morning of is hurry around trying to eat brekky, pack food and get ready. We have to look after our mental health as well as the physical in this instance.
- Find healthy choices that are quick and easy.
- Swap it- have multigrain, wholegrain or wholemeal bread instead of white (basically chose wholegrains or less processed over processed grains), choose low fat or no fat dairy products, crackers instead of chips, juices or flavoured milks, or if you must diet soft drinks instead of soft drinks (depending on brand and stats obviously), wholemeal pasta over white, healthier brekky cereals, use raw honey instead of sugar etc. There are so many of these easy swaps that don’t require additional time. All they require is that you buy a healthier product.
- Always have an emergency snack pack (nuts, dried fruit, oats, seeds etc) in your bag if you get hungry and stuck somewhere not so healthy haha.
- If you need a sweet hit but don’t really want a not-so-healthy snack get your sweet kick naturally with fruit.
I’ve only offered you a very small and vague list of ways to exercise and eat healthily when you’re busy- really there are plenty of options. What it comes down to is you- do you really want to eat healthy and become healthier with exercise? If you do you will find the time to take the extra effort (initially) and eventually it will become routine. And of course, you will become a professional exerciser and healthy eater that it will soon be second nature to you
What are your healthy eating and exercise tips for people busy lives? Share ‘em round!