Do you find it difficult to work out with your busy schedule?
It’s a common misconception that healthy living takes a ton of extra time and effort. But, a busy schedule and a healthy lifestyle don’t always have to be incompatible. With a little bit of preparation and some creative workout options, you can find room for your fitness goals even on the most jam-packed day.
Working out is extremely beneficial for your overall wellness
. It activates your body, boosts your immune system, keeps your mind prepared and motivated for work, and improves your mental health (1).
However, life’s responsibilities sometimes get in the way — you may have to catch up with so much work on your plate that you no longer have the time to squeeze in a day in the gym or a jog at the park. But your life shouldn’t stay that way. So today, let me walk you through how to live an active lifestyle while being on the go!
Tips on Balancing an Active and Busy Lifestyle
For some people, working out in an actual gym with actual training equipment is ideal for achieving your desired level of fitness. But, that doesn’t mean home workouts or mobile training can’t be just as beneficial. There is a 2019 study that highlights the beneficial effect of home-based training systems, when combined with diet, and their impact on cardiometabolic outcomes (2).
The myth has been debunked — you can always find the time to squeeze in time to work out, even on your busiest day. Today, we’re going to tell you how exactly you can manage to do that!
Starting with investing in the right workout tools…
Best Workout Tools to Invest In
Having the correct and appropriate workout equipment can help you perform better fitness exercises, whether at home, in the office, or during your vacation. As you’re always on the go, investing in gym-like equipment might not be a good option for you. But, you don’t need to have a heavy treadmill so you can perform exercise better.
That’s why I’ve put together this list to help you get a full workout from equipment that’s small enough to fit in a closet — or, in some cases, a desk drawer.
The first item you want to invest in is a high-quality yoga or workout mat. Doing stretches and workout poses on a hard floor may hurt some parts of your body, and using a towel or a carpet may slide under you while you’re doing complex workout exercises.
The best aspect about workout mats is that they aren’t that big, so you can always tuck them in the car to the office or on a mini-vacation. We also like that a mat comes with a strap, which keeps it bundled when you’re not using it.
A lot of people are going crazy over resistance bands. In the past, people often called it a small, but terrible workout tool. In more recent times it however it is regarded as lightweight tool that is can also be highly effective for specific workouts.
Training with resistance bands provides similar and sometimes even greater muscle activity than weight training. The only difference is that resistance bands involve lower force on the joints, which means that more impulse can be provided to the muscles with less risk of injury.
There are different types of resistance bands in the market, choose the ones that will fit right your fitness goal. I personally love Hyperwear resistance bands and you will receive a discount by visiting Products I Love. You can learn more about them here.
I personally love working out with resistance bands, there’s just so much more to do with them!
A gym’s mile-long rack of dumbbells can do you great as you perform your workout routine at the gym. But, if you don’t have much space at home or in the office, other alternatives are needed. Instead of investing in regular dumbbells, you can opt to invest in adjustable dumbbells to tone and strengthen your muscles. Some come with a storage rack that’s incredibly easy to slide under the bed or behind the couch.
Jump ropes are accessible workout tools to bring with you anywhere — whether across the country on a work trip or to the local park. These ropes are just the best workout tool to help you eliminate any excuses for skipping a workout when traveling. You can jump rope anywhere and break a sweat!
Today, there are a lot of jumping ropes that are a solid investment for better workout performance. However, the quality and material of your jump rope can make or break your training session, so make sure to choose the best fit for you.
Another method that has grown in demand is suspension training — it provides a unique and flexible workout that targets your strength against gravity on itself. This workout tool’s instability gives your body something to work against that is relatively personalized compared to traditional workout equipment.
Suspension trainers can be attached to the walls or a door and allow gravity to be your incentive. Most people usually create a set-up at home to ensure that they can use suspension trainers the best way. There is a recently published study (2020) reporting that a two months’ period of suspension training can improve functional ability and increase lean mass even in a home-based setting (3).
Smartwatches are smart for a reason. They don’t just tell time or connect you to your messages, but you’ll also get a travel, health, and training buddy everywhere you go. It’s insanely useful for people with an active lifestyle who want to understand and track their improvements every day.
Smartwatches track your workouts, help you regulate your sleep, monitor your intake, give you active training tips and even track your cardiovascular health (4)— and look damn good on your wrist all the while.
Healthy Diet Meals On-the-go
Having an active lifestyle while being on the go means you need to have enough nutrition to keep you going. Food is fuel, and just because you are on a strict food diet doesn’t mean you restrict yourself from what you should be consuming
Keeping up with life’s responsibilities means you might also miss breakfast, and some meals in between. That’s why having a list of go-to meals that are both nutritious and easy to make can help you save time!
Having that said, here are some of our best-proven healthy meals to go!
Overnight oats are an easy breakfast option that requires zero prep time in the morning. The perfect to-go meal that you can bring with you to work, to the car, and anywhere else your busy day takes you.
Oats are also a good source of beta-glucan fiber, which helps lower your cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of heart disease. Some of the healthy treats you can pair with oats are banana, berries, or some unsalted nuts!
Loaded Avocado Toast
Everybody’s guilt-free food favorite is avocado toast! Avocados are a good source of healthy fats and very filling which makes it great for breakfast or lunch.
Make your avocado toast with sourdough bread or whole-grain bread. Top it with your avocado, some lime, egg, butter, nuts, and a lot more!
Tachini is known for the good fats and protein that it contains. When you combine it with some nuts and cranberries you can have a nice bar that provides plenty of energy and quality macronutrients that will help you avoid cravings and the need for something sweet.
Taco salad is another recipe that you can prepare in advance and assemble when you’re ready to eat. This healthy salad is combined with chopped romaine, cooked ground beef with taco seasoning, sliced cherry tomatoes, avocado, or guacamole. For tasteful additions, include sliced radishes, cooked corn, or crushed tortilla chips, and lots of cheese!
For a simple and healthy dressing, I suggest a thin plain Greek yogurt with lime juice and drizzle it over the salad. Greek yogurt contributes some additional protein and calcium.
How to Stay Active
Now that you’ve got a list of workout tools to use and easy, healthy meals to keep your busy day going, let’s talk about how you can be sure to insert a workout in a jam-packed day.
Not everyone has a routine, and today might be different than it was yesterday. You’ll have more ample free time on some days, but on other days it might be shorter, and you can’t fit a workout in between. But whatever the day brings, you can always commit to something that you can do every day.
Here are some of the best suggestions you can try.
Commit to an Everyday 10 Minute Workout
The key to staying active is to commit to it every single day.
Prioritizing is key! It’s a given that there’s limited time in the day, with responsibilities and distractions competing for your attention. Make sure to streamline your to-dos, work, and other stuff so you can commit to training every day.
However, you don’t always have to commit to an hour-long training so you can call yourself productive. As little as 10-minutes a day can go a long way, and it’s better than not having worked out at all. According to studies (5) the high-intensity interval training (HIIT) which can even last only 10 minutes can be beneficial for the health of people with a sedentary lifestyle.
Combine Physical Activity with Daily Tasks
You might not realize it, but every day that you get yourself moving is considered an exercise — Your walk to the park, your run to get groceries, your early morning routine of making the bed. All of these easy movements can be combined into physical activities that can help you achieve your daily fitness goals, without you hitting the gym or reaching for the resistance bands at home.
You can try these tips to squeeze in 5 to 30-minute blocks without messing up your day:
- When you unload your shopping bags, strengthen your arms by lifting the milk bottle a few times before you place it on the racks.
- Park at the far end of the lot and walk briskly on your way to the building or office.
- Think about whether you need the car or whether you could walk or ride your bike instead.
- Try to walk and run with your dog and make it a daily habit.
- Take the stairs whenever you can, instead of the escalator.
However, not all tips will work for everyone, so choose a few things that you know will suit your body and your routine. Other than that, you can always get a coach to help you with everything you need from finding your time to workout, getting the right and adequate meals, and helping you with your overall fitness journey.
Try Mobile Personal Training
I understand — sometimes you feel like everything you’ve been doing isn’t making any progress. Don’t worry, you’re not the only one and I am here to help you!
Mobile personal training allows you to conduct sessions away from a club or gym setting — you can train in the park, in your home’s backyard, or anywhere that will work for you. The best thing with mobile training is that it’s always tailored fit according to your needs.
Fitness programs, nutritional plans, training videos, and many more resources are also made accessible and easy for you. You don’t have to take much time running to the nearest gym, just set up a training schedule, and our mobile gym gets to you!
Your Next Move
And that’s it! Staying active on a busy schedule is no easy task, but there are many ways to get moving that won’t obstruct your daily routine. With the right workout equipment, understanding of your schedule, and with healthy meals to fuel you, you can definitely ace an active lifestyle while always being on the go.
However, remember that getting into your ideal physique requires time and effort. You don’t always have to do it all in the beginning, a slow yet methodical approach will cement more concrete results for the long term. Working out with a coach can help you achieve your fitness goals efficiently.
Ready to get started? It’s never too late for you to begin!
1) Penedo, F. J., & Dahn, J. R. (2005). Exercise and well-being: a review of mental and physical health benefits associated with physical activity. Current opinion in psychiatry, 18(2), 189–193. https://doi.org/10.1097/00001504-200503000-00013
2) Roberts, C. K., Segovia, D. E., & Lankford, D. E. (2019). Effects of Home-Based Exercise Training Systems, Combined with Diet, on Cardiometabolic Health. International journal of exercise science, 12(2), 871–885.
3) Kullman, E. L., Saylor, S. M., & Little, K. D. (2020). Efficacy of whole-body suspension training on enhancing functional movement abilities following a supervised or home-based training program. The Journal of sports medicine and physical fitness, 60(2), 244–250. https://doi.org/10.23736/S0022-4707.19.10066-7
4) Bayoumy, K., Gaber, M., Elshafeey, A. et al. Smart wearable devices in cardiovascular care: where we are and how to move forward. Nat Rev Cardiol 18, 581–599 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41569-021-00522-7.
5) Ito S. (2019). High-intensity interval training for health benefits and care of cardiac diseases – The key to an efficient exercise protocol. World journal of cardiology, 11(7), 171–188. https://doi.org/10.4330/wjc.v11.i7.171