If you ask a mate how they’re going, the most likely answer you’ll get is “busy.” A typical day that once had you going from 9-5 is now looking more like 5-9 with people packing out their schedules with endless demands and responsibilities around the clock.
The reality is, being busy doesn’t leave a lot of room for exercise and recreation, an important part of a balanced life. The Department of Health has released statistics that both adults and children are simply not getting enough physical activity in their day – as much as 60 percent.
So, what can you do if you are too busy to exercise but need to increase your fitness, lose a bit of weight and stay active? We’ve outlined several suggested workouts that take minimal time but achieve maximum results, perfect for busy bodies like yourself.
Try a no equipment workout
When you can’t afford the time (or money) for a gym membership, you can still stay fit and keep your metabolism up by being smart about the exercise you do in the little time you have.
Chad Naidu, combat fitness specialist says, “There’s no trick. It’s all about achieving a high heart rate quickly and getting your body reach fat burning mode in the shortest time possible.”
“The following efficient but challenging workout can be done anywhere, anytime, with no equipment needed. Complete each set and push yourself by trying to finish the routine faster. Do it with a colleague or friend and keep each other accountable!”
3 x 60 sec on the spot sprints
3 x 60 sec squats
3 x 60 sec push-ups
3 x 60 sec crunches
3 x 60 sec lunges
3 x 60 sec burpees
2 min plank
Bounce your way to fitness
If you have kids and often wonder whether there’s any use in the trampoline in the yard, consider it a great piece of equipment for getting fit.
“Ten minutes of bouncing on a trampoline has the same energy output as jogging for 30 minutes,” says U-bounce owner Gaby Robinson. “Add to this the low impact on your joints and muscles and you have a great workout for your whole body offering many health and cardiovascular benefits.”
Despite producing an intense body workout, the trampoline absorbs 80 percent of the shock from the rebound, making it a safe and effective way to increase strength.
Trampolines are easy to obtain and maintain, with many available to purchase second-hand on community sites such as Gumtree. Or, you can sign up for a rebound exercise class at your local trampoline fitness centre for a more structured program.
Add more movement to your day
If a spin class or a run around the neighbourhood is completely off the cards, try incorporating more movement into your everyday life.
Founder of The Move More Institute and online fitness coach, Amanda Stercyzk promotes healthy active living by adding more movement into individuals’ busy lives whilst making the most of the little time they have.
“To help squeeze a workout into your already busy life, get a mobile PT to come to your home or office – the only time commitment is the actual workout. Alternatively, you can look online for a PT who’ll deliver training to you virtually.”
Amanda adds that every moment in the home or office is one to keep moving. The key is in changing your mindset to develop a daily habit.
“If you’re stuck on a conference call, grab a headset and pace the room whilst you listen in. Learn to take the stairs instead of the elevators and don’t stress trying to fit an entire workout into your day. Instead, focus on getting regular ‘snacks’ of exercise such as putting a set of dumbbells beside your computer and grabbing them for a quick circuit. Not every workout needs to be sweat-inducing to be effective. You can sit down, stand up and repeat followed by chair squats and lunges.”
Get out the resistance bands
Emerging from the 80’s and still as effective as ever, resistance bands are perfect if you’re time-poor and always out and about. Not only can you exercise at home, but you can take them anywhere you go and use them during work or play.
Fitness trainer and blogger Christel Oerum suggests, “A set of resistance bands cost less than $10 online and allows you to do a few exercises whenever you have a break at work or are watching TV at night.”
“I love workouts you can do anywhere without a lot of equipment – bring them anywhere in your handbag so you always are ready. With resistance bands, you can combine box squats, deadlifts, leg extensions, push-ups and the plank.”