Exercise without Exercising
Some people love the gym. Maybe it’s the feel you get lifting weights, the fancy equipment, the camaraderie or the motivation that comes from not wanting to be the skinny guy in the group. But for some, going to the gym can be intimidating if you are unfamiliar with the weights, equipment or just don’t like spending time trying to get fit in the presence of a bunch of other sweaty, grunting fitness freaks. Getting a good workout and exercise doesn’t mean you have to go to the gym. Whether it doesn’t work financially or for other reasons, there are several other ways to exercise besides the typical gym setting. So you don’t have to get involved with membership fees, animated instructors and other people’s sweat on the abs machine.
When you say “But I don’t like exercising” what you’re really saying is “I don’t enjoy this particular type of exercise that I have in mind”. If you don’t like cardio or running on the treadmill, don’t do it. If you don’t like aerobics, don’t do it. It’s as easy as that. The trick is to find activities that you like to do, that are fun for you and that doesn’t feel like a chore. You just need to find a way to exercise every day so that it can keep you thinking healthy which leads to other healthier decisions made throughout the day and that is where the big win is.
Swimming is an amazing exercise because it doesn’t tax your nervous system, it burns a lot of calories and its fun. Moreover, it’s a great way to exercise if you’re recovering from an injury or have certain conditions such as obesity or arthritis that makes other forms of exercise difficult and painful.
Running burns a lot of calories and whips your leg muscles in shape. The best part about running is you can just about do it anywhere. Make sure you run first thing in the morning because if you leave it until later, you have be too tired to follow through with it.
- Cycling instead of driving
This may sound overly simple, but just keep your car or motorcycle at home and cycle to work or school instead. You get from Point A to Point B, save money on petrol, get a good exercise and see some changes to your physique without doing anything else.
Hiking is a good exercise and more importantly it’s enjoyable especially with friends. You’ll get a good workout, see some nice scenery and get some good Instagram worthy pictures.
Walks shouldn’t be limited to just the morning walks you do. There’s nothing wrong with walking during the rest of the day. Walking with someone might help because it’ll be more like a conversation than exercise.
If your idea of a fun exercise is dancing than you’re in luck because dancing burns about the same amount of calories as jogging. There are several forms of dancing that uses up a lot of energy: Zumba, hip-hop, salsa and so on. The main thing to remember is controlling your movements and making each movement deliberate including plenty of bending, reaching, twirling and hip moving to get your whole body involved.
- Clean your house
Regular housecleaning doesn’t count but if you do more than you usually do than it counts! For example, empty out your cabinets and clean them, clean your fridge, clean all the rooms and the list goes on and on. As long as you’re moving constantly, it’s considered exercise. A side bonus of all of this is that your place will be really clean!
- Play with your kids and/or pets
Kids and dogs have unlimited energy. Spending time with kids and pets is a lot more fun than running on a treadmill. You can play games with your kids. Pretend to be a monster and chase them around or just give them horse rides. They’ll love it. You could take your dog for a walk to get in some exercise. You’ll improve your relationship with them and at the same time improve your health. Win-Win!
- Stop meeting for coffee
If somebody wants to meet up with you for coffee, suggest something active like hiking or going for a walk. Better yet, invite them to play some sports like football, basketball and the like. They are perfect for meeting new people, making friends, having fun and burning some serious calories.
Once you start being more active, your body will thank you for it. You don’t have to stick to one particular activity. You could allocate one activity for one day of the week. Swimming on Monday, dancing on Tuesday, playing with your kids and pets on the Weekends and so on. Just don’t think of it as exercise and most importantly have fun!