If the holidays are bringing extra decorating, entertaining, shopping, hosting, traveling and fun into your life they may be putting the squeeze on your time to exercise. Time is a limiting factor for any of us any time of year.
This post is about how to change the way you think about that. STAT!
No Time to Exercise?
You’re probably forgetting something.
Or you have never experienced something so you couldn’t know this.
When people say they don’t have time what they imagine is that they don’t have time to add something to their day if they’re going to feel the same way as they do now when they start to exercise.
They don’t remember or don’t know that if you feel energized 100% of the time you WILL absolutely have time for exercise, and so many more things you potentially want to do but haven’t been doing.
Exercise and healthy eating (including preparation) don’t COST you time. They give you MORE TIME!
It’s proven with research that people who exercise are more productive, more creative, able to problem solve better, and make fewer errors. That’s all TIME SAVING!
In fact, people who exercise during their workday (yoga for lunch, anyone?) report greater JOB SATISFACTION at the end of the day. Why? It’s probably easier to get work done, feel accomplished, and handle stressors easier.
Not having time to exerciseis a story you tell yourself. It may be a reality right now because you feel so drained.
If you don’t have the energy to begin exercising, or you’ve got a limiting condition, then start with nutrition. The more you learn about HOW to eat (not less, actually many women are eating too little or just poorly) for you right now, the less inflammation you’re going to have, the better you sleep, and the more you’re going to feel like moving more.
Thinking you don’t have time to exerciseis also about mistakenly thinking it takes an hour to get a good workout. It doesn’t.
In fact, if you’re drained, shorter more frequent exercise is better.
It’s not even a matter of building up to an hour. You don’t need to unless you’ve got some endurance goal. A short workout most of the time is more conducive to hormone balance than a long one.
How Much Time to Exercise Well?
Those days of getting an hour workout in every day and doing 3-hour long monster classes on the weekends? Gone. Not better for results. So let them go! Most older adults who try to pursue those types of endurance activities suffer repeated injuries, slow healing, and chronic fatigue or adrenal exhaustion at some point. (younger ones too!)
Ten or twenty minutes several times a week will help you feel better fast. Sleep improves by 33% with 10 minutes of daily exercise. An hour ho-hum workout can fail you where a 10-minute workout that helps you reach muscular fatigue can change your body (and your life).
The research is clear we need to exercise, and in general move more, all day. Quite a lot to live longer stronger. We sometimes get an incomplete message from experts we trust though.
It’s not about chasing a size or a number on a scale or a BMI. I’m not a fan of doctors who recommend “losing weight” without backing that up with a measure of body composition. If you don’t know your body fat: find out. Track THAT.
Yes, for sure, your waist circumference is a health risk or advantage. But the way to change it permanently is to focus on body fat (body composition). By increasing your lean muscle and decreasing your fat at the same time, your weight will change more slowly. Yet you’ll be far healthier and you will then be more successful in the optimal weight game long term.
Even then, stop chasing numbers and start chasing joy for life and energy to spend doing things you love with people you love. THAT’s motivating.
You don’t do anyone good if you’re drained, constantly tired, and if you’re a woman you’re probably always going to care a bit about how you look. If you’re tired and then also starve yourself of nutrient-dense food while you periodically binge on extreme exercise too, you’re going to wind up worse off, not better.
Here’s a question for you. Do you sneak in sweets daily? You find an excuse to go to the store to pick up something and then buy the peanut butter cups – or malted milk balls – like one of my clients? Are you “good” all day barely eating anything and then end up ordering a pizza late at night exhausted after constant meetings?
Those both steal time and energy from you. They drop you right on your you-know-what. Yet, you don’t think anything of the TIME they take right?
Time to Exercise
Try it my way for a month. Put exercise into your day. Commit. Decide that whether you’re motivated or not you’re going to do it. You will most likely start making better food choices. In fact, if your exercise comes just before a meal it could really change things. Study subjects made significantly higher nutrient-dense and moderate calorie food choices when they did just 6 minutes of power walking before lunch.