Tips for Accommodating Weight Loss and Exercise in a Busy Schedule

By Shannon Allen , last updated November 21, 2011

If you are like most Americans, accommodating time for exercise and weight loss goals into your daily life can seem daunting, but helpful tips from this article can give you the motivating push you need to get started. Accomplishing exercise and weight loss goals is not an easy task in our busy and overscheduled society. The time constraints of work, personal relationships and other obligations don't leave much time for calorie counting and burning. Read on for a few ideas to get you moving and meeting your fitness goals in no time!

Be Prepared

One of the biggest pitfalls to a healthy diet is not having a healthy option when the craving for a calorie fest hits. Turning down the cookies or other diet crashers is much easier when you have another option to choose from. Pack healthy snacks for your day including nuts, fruit, vegetables, trail mix or figure friendly snack options so you have something to eat when everyone else is going for the donuts.

The same principle applies to standard meals. Keep your house full of healthy options for breakfast, lunch and dinner and avoid eating out as much as possible. Packing your lunch not only keeps your diet in line but it also saves money.

Make Exercise a Priority

Exercise should be a high priority because it is extremely important. Taking care our your body not only helps you look better on the outside but it also promotes better overall health and quality of life. Something this important should be incorporated into even the busiest of schedules.

While most studies recommend 60 minutes of exercise 4-6 times a week, many people find that time nonexistent. Study your calendar and see where you can incorporate exercise into your daily routine. Twenty minutes in the morning of cardio before work or a thirty minute yoga session in the evening three days a week would require less time but still offer healthy results. Make use of your breaks during the day. Maybe you can do some exercise at lunch or get off the subway one stop early to get a little walk in before work. Taking the stairs instead of the elevator or parking further away can also add little segments of exercise. Even talking a walk around the outside of your building during a break can be beneficial to both your mind and your body.

Up your Incentive

Sometimes weight loss and exercise goals lose momentum when you try to achieve them alone. Finding a friend who shares similar goals can increase your motivation and then you can accomplish those goals together. Waking up 45 minutes earlier to exercise becomes a lot easier if someone is holding you accountable for meeting them. A slightly more expensive exercise buddy could come in the form of a personal trainer. Many personal trainers are willing to work around busy client's schedules and offer the support and drive many people need to attain their fitness goals.

Another way to increase your incentive may come from your employer. Healthy employees have been shown in recent studies to be more productive and miss less days of work. As a result, many companies now offer in-house gyms or discounts to commercial gyms to increase the physical activity of their staff.

Finally, reward yourself for milestone accomplishments. Incorporate incentives into your fitness aspirations such as a new shirt or special date night when you loose 5 pounds or a trip if you maintain your regimen for an entire year. These incentives may give you the extra drive you need to keep going when your motivation is lacking.

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