5 ways to find more time to move

No matter how often we ask for more time, there never seems to be any extra hours in the day. Whether we like it or not, we’re stuck with trying to fit everything into twenty-four.

Time is always going to be a factor. Life is busy, things come up, and regardless of how you slice it, physical activity does take up some time. A half hour jog is half an hour less for something else.

The real trick then, isn’t finding more time, it’s making the time. Giving physical activity the priority it deserves.

That’s where these helpful tips come in handy, helping you make sure physical activity remains near the top of your to-do list today, rather than sliding off into tomorrow.

5 tips for when things get busy

1. Strategically change your clothes like Rebecca.

“When you come home from work, slip into some active wear right away rather than leisure wear. It gets you in the active mindset - so even if you don't make it to the gym or out for a run, you may find it more natural to drop for pushups during a commercial break or stretch it out while watching TV.” – Rebecca

2. Actively parent like Jon.

“An awesome tip for parents is to be active when your kids are at sports. I used to do this with Alison and her gymnastics. I’d park in the parking lot, take her inside, then go for a run while she was doing her class. Instead of sitting around checking out twitter on my phone, I’d get a 45-minute run in while she was being active as well.” – Jon

3. Find something you enjoy like Dave.

“Do what you love. Whether you’re into team sports, going to the gym, long walks or otherwise, you will find the time if it’s something that you love to do.” – Dave

4. Bike to work like Georgia.

“Bike to work. When the weather is above 0 degrees Celsius, I make the effort to bike to work. It’s 15 minutes to work, and 15 minutes home—adding up to an extra 30 minutes of cardio each work day, five times a week. No better way to get to the 150 minutes of MVPA!.” – Georgia

5. Sneak physical activity into your day like Natalie.

“Add physical activity to routine tasks; adding a new behaviour to an existing behaviour increases the likelihood that a new behaviour will stick! Dance while brushing your teeth, preparing lunches, or making dinner. Do 5 push-ups or squats after you pee. Perform 10 squats every time you check your phone. Get on the subway and walk the length of the train while you wait for your stop.” – Natalie

More tips!

While often the most helpful tips are the most specific, in general, people who do manage to make time for physical activity tend to make use of a few similar strategies:

  • Schedule physical activity in your calendar and treat it like any other important meeting.
  • Plan your breaks! Instead of just creating a to-do list, create a take-a-break list.
  • Start small. Commit to doing something active for 5-10 minutes, because once you get started, you'll likely keep going for longer.
  • Try to squeeze some form of activity into your workday. Why not get paid to work out or go for a walk?

When you see physical activity as something that has to happen at the gym for an hour every time, it can easily feel like one more thing you have to find time for. Instead, try to make moving more a regular part of your day. Get to work more actively. Take active breaks. Find ways to swap sitting time for active time. Lead a more active life. And when all else fails, put it in your planner.