Finding time to exercise is something many busy people have a hard time doing. Whether you’re busy with work, family or a combination of the two, exercise doesn’t have to become a distant memory.
However, you do need to maximize the time you do have to work out if you’re always on the go. Try one of these five exercises or rotate them throughout the week to make the most of every small window you have for exercise:
High-Intensity Interval Training
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) isn’t so much a type of exercise as a way of exercise. When you do high-intensity interval training, you vary the speed with which you perform any given exercise, which works to boost your metabolism, breathing and heart rate.
As an example, high-intensity interval training could involve running at a moderate pace for two minutes before sprinting for one minute, then returning to your original pace. This process would be repeated several times for the allotted amount of time.
HIIT is exceptionally effective in burning fat, but it can be difficult for some beginners. If you want to start with HIIT, take “baby steps” and don’t make your interval times too high.
Running is a beneficial workout that doesn’t require much time because of its relative intensity. While you may need to run at a slow pace when you first start out, you can quickly build your pace and burn a lot of calories in a short period of time.
Running also promotes lean muscle mass and helps shape parts of the body like the legs, abdominal and gluteal muscles. High-intensity interval training and running also pair well, and many people can get a great workout in under an hour.
Believe it or not, walking is one of the best exercises a person can do, especially if they haven’t been in their regular fitness routine for some time. Walking is relatively easy on the body, and an hour of walking can help a person burn about 500 calories.
If you use intervals in your walking – meaning you vary how fast you walk – you’ll burn even more calories within that hour. Best of all, walking likely won’t make you feel so fatigued you can’t go about your day compared to how some other exercises can when you first start out.
Squats aren’t necessarily the most fun of all exercises, but they are really efficient for people that don’t have a lot of free time to work out. That’s because they work the largest group of muscles in the body at the same time – the quadriceps, hamstring, glute and thigh muscles.
To effectively perform squats, you’ll basically want to mimic the motion of sitting down in a chair, then getting out of it repeatedly. In fact, if you’re unsure of the motion you can even try it a few times using a real chair so you don’t put unnecessary stress on your body.
Once you get the motion down, you can even add weights to the exercise to make it more difficult and more effective.
Swimming is a total body workout, and it’s one that can help you build lean muscle. It’s a particularly effective exercise for women that don’t want to build bulky muscle or men that prefer to stay lean.
According to Women’s Health Magazine, swimming at an easy pace can help you burn about 500 calories, and revving your pace up to a fairly fast swim can easily burn 800 or more per hour. Even a half hour of swimming is a pretty effective workout.
Swimming is also easy on the joints, so it’s an ideal workout for people who have injuries in their past.
If it’s hard to find time to exercise, you’re not alone! Almost everybody faces that challenge, and some days, it’s just nearly impossible to find the energy.
However, these five exercises can make up the fundamental parts of an ideal exercise routine for somebody that doesn’t have a lot of time. If you can, try to schedule your workout each day – that way, it will be harder to find an excuse to skip it.