We all know that for our physical and mental wellbeing we should do more exercise. But most of us struggle to do as much as we should. The most common excuse, by a long way, is lack of time. Sound familiar? Well, by being organised you can achieve a better life – that is, one which is more balanced and less stressful. With a bit of planning and a few tricks, you will be able to fit your workout around work and family time, and still have a social life!
How to get organised
Time to get organised! The best place to start is with some forward planning. Get out your diary or calendar and schedule a minimum of 150 minutes of exercise time into your week. Make sure you’re realistic about the time needed, and you’ll find that by putting it in your plan for the day, it’s more likely to happen. When the inevitable clashes occur, you’ll be able to organise other things around it. Listing your tasks for the day helps you work out priorities and timings – so a few minutes getting organised will reap dividends.
The way to a better life
Think about what kind of exercise you would like do in advance. Ideally over the course of a week you should include a mix of cardio and strength training, and you may want to do some indoors and some outdoors. You are more likely to do it if you enjoy it – so if an energetic Zumba class is your idea of fun write it into your plan.
Being healthy means your busy life will be a better life. You will fit more in to your day without being exhausted by the evening. Do you find yourself tossing and turning at night? Exercise gives you the added benefit of better quality sleep, which will set you up for the next day.
Busy, busy, busy
If you’re still struggling to make it happen, maybe you need to look at incorporating extra exercise into your normal routine. Why not walk upstairs instead of taking the escalator or the lift? Get off the bus a couple of stops early and walk the rest of your journey. By increasing your general activity levels, you will find yourself energised and more likely to make that exercise class.
Make it a social time
Few of us want to give up time socialising with friends to do exercise, but there’s no reason why you can’t combine the two activities. With most of us living crazy busy lives, I’m sure your friends would be happy to spend an hour or two exercising with you – you may even replace that glass of wine with a smoothie!
Celebrate even small successes
Recognising your achievements is an important part of staying motivated. You may want to chart your progress, keep track of your 10,000 steps each day or count off your 150 minutes of exercise a week. But be kind to yourself. There are always going to be weeks when the plan doesn’t work out. Don’t beat yourself up, and don’t give up. You may only do half an hour rather than an hour, but that is still a positive step towards a better quality of life.
Organise your ‘busy life’ to be a ‘better life’!
• Make your plan realistic – allow time to change and get to your workout class
• Check things off when you’ve done them – it’s always good to see your progress
• Delegate tasks – most of us have tasks that could be done by someone else
• One thing at a time – multi-tasking rarely saves much time, but does increase stress levels
• Build on your success and learn from your mistakes – look at what went well and do more of that