How to Be More Active When You Don't Have Time

For an entire year after Forrest was born, I really struggled to get back into being active. When you feel like you don't have time, when you're always moving from one thing to the next, it can be hard to add "go for a walk" or "do an exercise video" to that. In the last three months, I've tried harder to be active: to take Forrest on walks, to not just sit on the couch. 

If you're busy in the same way I'm busy, and you're not willing to wake up at 4am ahead of your toddler (someday, Forrest will sleep in, right?), here are a few tips for trying to be more active. Here's the caveat of these tips: I'm not claiming you'll be able to work in a 2 hour work out. It won't be easy. But here's what I do. 

1. Get a Fitbit 

This is a daunting one for some people. But I love my Fitbit. I have a cheap, $50 Fitbit (it's the most simple version) and a hand-me-down Fitbit One. Both work just fine. You don't have to get the fanciest version for it to work, I promise. I mostly just need my steps. Here's the thing: I work a sedentary job, I have a toddler. I know it's going to take a while of practice for me to hit 10,000 steps a day. (For some people, who live in cities where walking everywhere is possible, this is nothing.) So my goal everyday is 5,000 and if I hit that, I feel pretty good. If I can hit 7,000, I feel like a champ. Set realistic goals for you and your Fitbit. 

2. Fit in what you can 

Ok, this is a big one for me. I used to love going to the gym every single day after work. I would spend an hour doing cardio and lifting weights. It kept me healthy, made me feel good, and improve my mood. But the truth is, I just don't have time to do that anymore. I've thought of ways to fit it in: going before work, leaving work earlier, going in the evening once Forrest is in bed. But I'm so exhausted by the end of the day. Instead, I try to go walking when the weather permits. Forrest and I will walk around the park, then play on the play structure. It's a nice little exercise and we get outside the house. On days where I'm home with Forrest, we go in the morning, and then usually play outside for a little while in the afternoon. 

3. Download workout apps. 

I have tons of work out apps. FitStar and Pump Up are two of my favorites. In the evening, I have about enough energy to clean the house and then for a 10-15 minute work out using one of these apps. It's not a huge time commitment, but it's enough to make me feel like I'm active. I like FitStar because it automatically syncs to my FitBit. However, I like Pump Up because you can generate work outs depending on what areas you want to target and whether to include cardio or not. So if nothing else, a quick work out using an app is doable, especially in the evening or early morning. 

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