We all know that studying takes a lot out of us. This on top of the fact that you add a little more chaos into your life by doing this while you work. Working and coming home to study is easier said than done; most of us still want to keep our social lives going or even make sure that we spend time with our family fulfilling our responsibilities.
So when you think that on top of all of the studies and work you still have that crazy thought of somehow keeping yourself active and staying fit?
Here’s the thing: you don’t need to be hitting the gym for the full 60 minutes to count that as staying on the path of a fit lifestyle. It’s the simple things that you can do on a daily basis that will keep your step count up and mind sharp while still keeping all that social bonding you crave going.
Here are five tips to keep you on the move while you work and study:
- Get up
Simple right? Well for most of us we spend our days at work behind a desk or on long car drives in traffic, train ride or buses to and from the office, the last thing you can bear to think of doing, is sitting down again to study. Your brain and your eyes need that little break too after focusing so hard – keeping your concentration and productivity is hard. That’s why every 30 to 45 minutes of grinding hard at your desk you should stand up and walk around a little bit. That could even mean checking in on the little ones while they are fast asleep or even throwing around a ball for a bit.
We all have this conventional thinking of when we hit the books it means hunched over in a chair. Of course this can lead to some strain on muscles all over your body, neck, back, shoulders and yes, even your eyes. And I know how you just love getting those headaches at 23h00 rushing though that last chapter before hitting the hay.
Right, so let’s change that! Nowadays we have awesome technological gadgets to make use of; get that iPad, tablet or Kindle out, download your book and change it up. Sit on a ball, lay on the grass, in the bath or even stand a while – this will make a difference and chances are when you start feeling uncomfortable your body is setting off that reminder that it’s time for your mini walk. If you want to be a real over-achiever, use that time you spend in the taxi or train – whip out your books and start reading!
- On the move
I was saying earlier you don’t need a gym to train, which is very true. Your kids or pets even make for great training tools plus allows for that precious time together creating wonderful memories to cherish. Use the chores of washing dishes or bath time for the kids before bed; tweak your routine slightly and change that form – squat more, take the chance at a few lunges.
Stick in that aerobics video or play that album, let your hair down, dance around the lounge with your kids. You know that half chewed toy your dog adores? Well maybe it’s time to get a new one so that you can run around and see who is better at tug of war!
Standing too long isn’t a problem either; there are some great Pilates exercises you can perform while standing or even seated at your desk. Best part? You can do it at any point in the day.
- Active = fun
All I hear about day after day is running will make you fit, cycle more and my personal favourite I play a sport to get fit. True, all these things are great when placed into a well-planned training program because there is nothing worse than suffering from overuse, injuries or burnout.
But before you get scared off, the point here is to stay active without torturing yourself; take friends for that nice hike on a Sunday, that walk on the beach with your dogs or even roller blading around the block with the kids. Enjoy what you are doing – take in the here and now. All too often we don’t give ourselves enough time to unwind and this just leads to more stress and shorter attention spans.
Laugh lots to release those feel-good hormones, endorphins. With the added bonus of that bit of exercise, dopamine will help create a magical cocktail.
- Mini goals
Yes, goals are important and yes, they will motivate you! Make a small list to start with easy achievable things to do that week, work up to those big dreams. And of course, what is the point of trying to reach them if there isn’t that reward at the end? I know, I know… fitness, a healthy lifestyle and a longer life are the reward. Sure, the long-term ones are great but we are the generation of instant gratification so let’s not be silly about this.
That doesn’t mean I’ve given you the green light to be over the top extravagant, though just special small little treats will help to give to yourself a feeling of progress. Just make sure that the reward matches the goal.
Remember saying you don’t have time to gym is just the adult version of the dog ate my homework. Like they say: whether you say you can or can’t, you’re right. So keep it upbeat and never stop trying even if it’s not always what you planned for.