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7 Ways to Keep a Fitness Routine Without Giving Up Your Life
by Emily Jacques

You know itapostrophes good for you. You know it will give you more energy, help you lose weight, and reduce your risk of developing all manner of diseases. In fact, you not only know you should exercise every day, but you want to. Youapostrophed love to be able to fit into your favorite jeans again. To have the kind of body that other people envy.

But somehow, you just canapostrophet find time to fit a regular exercise routine into your busy schedule. You go the bookstore and browse through books, trying to get inspired. You leave after a short time, feeling defeated and depressed.

You know the fitness book authors mean well, but you wonder if any of them has a life. After all, they seem to want you to give up yours for the sake of staying in shape. And/or they recommend a plethora of equipment you not only cannot afford, but couldnapostrophet find room for in your house without asking your children to give up a bedroom.

Life is hectic, but beginning and maintaining a fitness routine is possible with no money, a little creativity and just a few minutes here and there. The seven ideas listed below will get you moving in no time.

  1. Donapostrophet hit the snooze button. Discipline yourself to get up when the alarm clock goes off, and you will add up to twenty minutes to your day. In those twenty minutes you could do five minutes of stretching, ten minutes of power walking or running, and five minutes of weight training.
  2. Exercise while watching T.V. Iapostropheve never liked lifting weights, but found that when I did it while focusing on my favorite program I didnapostrophet mind it so much. You could also walk in place, stretch, practice squatting, or do leg lifts.
  3. Do one or two weightless strength training exercises every time you get up from your desk to take a break. Weightless, as in, not requiring a dumbbell. For example, squeezing your hands together as both arms are outstretched in front of your chest. Pushing up against a low ceiling. Flexing your biceps as hard as you can for ten seconds. You may never develop the bulk of the Incredible Hulk that way, but you will be giving your body a much-needed workout.
  4. Sit on a balance ball instead of a chair. This will help strengthen your abdominal muscles and improve your posture. It will also allow you to burn a few extra calories, a definite bonus! (Caution: Balance balls are generally not recommended for anyone with back problems.)
  5. Turn it into a family ritual. Race your kids down the sidewalk for the ten minutes before dinnertime. Or after dinner, take a soccer ball to the park and kick it around for a while. If your family has gotten addicted to T.V., this routine will have the additional benefit of breaking the boob tube habit.
  6. Cook and clean the old-fashioned way. Use a wire whisk instead of electric beaters. A broom instead of a vacuum. A knife instead of a food processor. Such changes may not seem like much, but you will be using muscles and burning calories that you wouldnapostrophet otherwise while using the modern-day appliances.
  7. Read and talk on your feet. If possible, stand up and pace back and forth while reading documents or talking on the phone. Stand up on your toes once in a while to stretch your heel and strengthen your calf. Bend and twist at the waist to add further flexibility and tone to your body.

Keeping fit can and should be an integral part of your day. Begin implementing these suggestions, then come up with some of your own. Your body will soon thank you for it!

About the author:

Emily Jacques is a natural health nut, mother, and online wellness coach. Wondering where you fall on the natural health continuum? You can take a free, fun quiz on the home page of her website at

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