Fitness Motivation Throughout Your Day
How you can hack your day to find your fitness mojo at any time of the day!
Let’s face it, some days, it feels like fitting in exercise is near-on impossible! If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll see I regularly share stories encouraging my followers to ‘schedule in’ workouts a week ahead.
That’s because, life can get in the way but working out and focusing on getting our hearts pumping, muscles moving, and mind focused on the task at hand – all these things are important for keeping us healthier and – ultimately – younger for longer!
I always get asked by clients, ‘When is the best time of the day to workout’. I’ll let you in on a little secret – the best time of the day to workout is, WHENEVER YOU CAN FIT IT IN… I really do mean this!
- If you’re a busy parent who does the school run and has to fit in work too, find a time either before the kids are awake or schedule it in during your lunch break.
- If you’re a young professional running around at networking events and have a busy social schedule, get it done early and enjoy reaping the energy benefits throughout the day.
- If you’re retired and have busy mornings with appointments, grab 30 minutes in the afternoon and get that blood flowing.
In short, the best time is the time you do actually get to spend doing it. But, if you did want some motivation and guidance on how to sneak moments of exercise and movement into your day – here’s some top tips for ‘getting it done’!
I would suggest a fast power walk in the morning, maybe first thing for at least 20 / 30 mins is the best way to wake up the body. This way you are warmed up and ready to do some body weight moves and add in those important power moves...
For example, squats, lunges, planks and, my favourite – plies! These are all great strengthening moves to build stronger muscle mass and bone density. This is because you are working the larger muscle groups, but you will also get your heart rate up and challenge your cardiovascular system.
Then, if you have time and energy, doing a 30minute HIIT or resistance session first thing, after your morning walk is a great way to set your mind and body up for the day ahead. Not to mention, getting it done in the morning means nothing can get in the way of your workout later on.
For those that do spend a lot of time sitting, I would suggest using your chair to do squats up and down whenever you get a moment in the day. Just hover off the chair, don’t sit all the way. Try to do this 50 times throughout the day to get those leg, butt and back muscles fired up.
I would also do small runs on the spot to get the blood pumping around the body, using your arms too.
Finally, try to add some core and stretch work into your day, even if it’s before you sit down or at lunchtime or straight away after work when you close your laptop. A downward facing dog into plank variation, with knees down into a press up and then back to downward dog – this uses the whole body. Stretches out key areas that are tense from sitting and gets blood flowing throughout the body. As you do this more often, it becomes a meditative process versus a workout – so it’s a win-win. Try do this flow 10-15 times.
On my Eastwood Fit App, I have bite-size stretch sessions which you can regularly check into and add to your daily schedule. As you incorporate these, you’ll become more confident and comfortable in which muscle groups to stretch out and focus on.
All of the above moves are challenging, so they will wake up the whole body by stimulating it to react to the challenge!
Working out in the evenings is great for some – especially night owls. But many struggle to find the energy to commit to high-energy exercise routines in the evening. This is where my technique classes or even stretch classes really come into their own. After a busy day, you want to be able to bring your nervous-system back to a balanced state, that way you’ll sleep better.
My technique classes are slightly longer in format (45-60minutes) but it involves slower, controlled movements that allow you to really hone in on your posture, form and alignment – all key, especially if you have been sedentary (sitting) for most of the day. I also love to encourage clients do a short walk followed by a yoga or stretching session to really ease tension and keep muscles supple and strong.
Other than that, other forms of steady state cardio that are great for evening workouts are swimming or a moderately-paced cycling session. The best thing about working out in the evening is letting go of your day and allowing yourself a bit of mental space.
I always follow an evening workout with a warm bath to really reap the benefits.
Exercise must be consistent in order for you to see results and reap the real benefits. Schedule it in and make it non-negotiable, for the health and happiness of yourself and those around you. Finally, try to back all of these up with a healthy eating programme because that’s when you’ll really notice the results.