Ten Ways to Move More Everyday in Your Life

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When you try to find time to exercise, it can be overwhelming. These are the tips that I offer my patients in physical therapy… and how I keep myself moving.

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I get it. It’s something we all have said.

 

Simply fill in the blanks: parent working, a parent working night shifts or student, a parent who commutes or stays home to care for children. It’s not hard to find ways to get exercise in your daily life.

 

My business is as a mom and physical therapist. I must schedule my exercise times.

 

In the last 11 years, I have realized that the “I’ll-workout-later” approach does not work for me. To keep my mental health and my strength, I must make time for exercise.

 

Here’s another tip. Try adding a few extra activities throughout the week and day to keep your body active. Even a few minutes more movement can add up over time.

 

These are 10 ways you can move more in your everyday life without taking up more of your time.

 

1. Go up the steps

 

Yes, I do. You’ve probably heard this a lot. It’s still one of my favorite tips.

Taking stairs rather than the elevator can increase your heart rate, balance, and lower-extremity strength. You can do heel raises from the edge of the step if you feel energetic and have time, or you can take two steps at a stretch.

You’ll be glad you didn’t take the elevator.

 

2. Incorporate walking meetings

 

Schedule a walk for one day if you work remotely or have made the transition to virtual conference calls.

You don’t have to stare at a screen or look at spreadsheets. Instead, take your headphones with you and go for a walk. This is a great way for you to change up your daily routine.

If you work in an office environment, make sure to take your one-on-1 meetings with you. Walking together can improve team bonding and lead to better ideas. Research has shown walking increases creativity and improves mental acuity.

 

3. Lunge it up

 

This is something I do a lot. I get funny looks from time to time, but I’m busy and my time is precious.

Walking lunges along supermarket aisles while still holding on to the cart is great for shopping. You can do about 10-20 lunges with the cart, depending on how long the aisles are in your supermarket. It’s quite fun, so go for it!

 

4. Place your weight on an exercise ball.

 

You can swap your office chair in favor of a stability ball. You can use the stability ball to help your back and improve posture. Also, while you are sitting on the ball, you can perform gentle mobility stretches for your neck and pelvis.

To help your core stabilizers, try a hula-hoop motion. Tucking and untucking your pelvis can be done by doing a hula-hoop motion. Sitting marches and other exercises can be added to your abdominal work. All this while you are still at your desk.

 

5. Park far from the city

 

Although we must be alert and safe around our surroundings, it is a good idea to park further away from where you are going. Walking for a few extra minutes can help you increase your daily steps.

 

6. Get more sex

 

Yup, you’re welcome. An older study found that sex burns calories at an average rate of 3.1 calories per hour for women and 4.2 for men.

Although it is not as intense as a jog, you can still get a sweat out of sex. You can have fun, experiment with new positions, bond with your partner, and move more.

 

7. Fostering a pet

 

Volunteers are always needed to help at the local shelter or other adoption agencies. Bring your family to the shelter to volunteer to walk a few dogs.

You can increase your outdoor time, help a dog or your community, teach your children about caring for others and have some family time getting active and moving. It’s a win for everyone.

 

8. Dance party

 

Turn on some music and clear the space. This can be done while you cook dinner, fold laundry, or vacuum.

Dancing can help you burn calories, and improve balance and coordination. You can even make it a contest or game with your children. You want them to be able to understand 80s rock. Get shakin’ by listening to ACDC or whatever else makes you tap your feet.

 

9. Change up the game night

 

You can swap out your board and card games for more active games during your next family game night.

Here are some games to help you remember: Twister, hide and seek, kick-the-can, scavenger hunting, and Twister.

These games can be enjoyed indoors and outdoors by anyone of any age. My family had a lot of fun playing Pin the Tail on the Donkey, and Freeze Frame Dance Party. We all feel tired and sweaty afterward.

 

10. During TV time, stretch or exercise

 

This goes against all the principles of “binge-and-chill,” but I’m not ashamed to admit it. Walking on the treadmill, stationary biking, stretching on the floor, weight lifting for upper- and whole-body strengthening, or Pilates during your next Netflix session are all options.

You can get 30 minutes of exercise if you just watch a 30-minute TV show and then move all the way. If you feel that this is a good place for you to start, you can limit it to the commercials.

You can keep your exercise equipment near your “binge-watching” area and perform bodyweight exercises, foam rolling, or other activities during your show. A few reps of tricep presses or bicep curls can make a big difference in your posture and arm strength.

This is especially true of women who are more at risk for osteoporosis. To keep your bones strong and healthy, you should incorporate weight training.

 

The bottom line

 

These ideas should motivate and inspire you to move more in your day.

It can be difficult to keep a routine. Although it can be overwhelming to start exercising, these tips will help you get started.

You can start small with a few lunges, a walking class once a week, or stairs. Before you know it you’ll be moving and groovin’ a lot more than before.