Are you struggling to fit exercise into your overbooked schedule?

With traffic, your commute to the gym could be as long as your one-hour workout.

Plus, you’ll need time to shower afterward if you’re heading somewhere other than home. For women, that means adding time for hair and make-up.

If going to the gym doesn’t fit into your schedule, here are some ideas to improve your physical activity.

Some of these ideas you may have heard of, others may be new.

In either case, target adding at least one item weekly to your daily activity.

After a few months, you’ll notice some improvement in your physical health (unfortunately, these improvements do not happen overnight).

Park far away and walk to your destination

Opt for stairs instead of using the elevator or escalator

Do calf raises while brushing your teeth

Replace meeting friends at a restaurant with meeting them at a nearby park for a walk

Do a circuit of push-ups, sit-ups, and jumping jacks during commercial breaks while watching television

Replace your desk chair with an exercise ball

Tighten your abs when sitting

Bicep curl your shopping bags

Use a restroom located far from your office, include another floor to take advantage of stairs

Do modified push-ups using the kitchen counter while waiting for the microwave to beep

Start your day with a full-body stretch when you get out of bed

Lunge when walking from one room to another room

Use ankle weights 

Find a short cardio video on YouTube to do at home

Wall sit when deciding what to wear

Stand up and stretch from your seated position every hour

End your day with a two-minute plank

Unload groceries from your car one bag at a time  

Walk when talking on the phone

Dance to your favorite song

Whether you’re taking care of kids, aging parents, or a demanding job, finding time to go to the gym can be challenging.

Instead of neglecting your health, stay active by incorporating changes to how you do things.

It may appear as a small change, but it will make a difference in your health over time.

Staying active is one way to reduce your healthcare expenses as you age.

(Update to original post from February 24, 2018)


Niv Persaud, CFP®, CDFA®, RICP®, is a Managing Director at Transition Planning & Guidance, LLC. Life is more than money. It’s about living the lifestyle you want and can afford. For that reason, Niv consults with clients on money, life, and work. Her approach capitalizes on techniques she learned throughout her career, including as a management consultant, executive recruiter, and financial advisor. Her services include developing  comprehensive financial plans, divorce financial reviews, and retirement plans. Niv actively gives back to her community through her volunteer efforts. She believes in living life to the fullest by cherishing friendships, enjoying the beauty of nature and laughing often — even at herself. Her favorite quote is by Erma Bombeck, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I used everything you gave me.’”