I was at church last week and the preacher started a new series entitled “Margins”. Basically, his point was that we have to do a better job of managing the extra time we have during the day. For some people “extra” time is hard to come by or is it?
A couple of things jump out at me when looking at the graph.
- We as Americans spend 4.3 hours a day on Leisure, Sports and what the graph describes as “other”.
- We are only getting 7.6 hours of sleep a night. (many surveys say we get about 6.5 a night)
4.3 hours a day…interesting. That’s a lot of time to spend on things that aren’t associated with work or family. That might all come at the end or the beginning of the day but regardless, the time is there. But what I want to focus on are the people with too much time and not those with too little.
Here is where my personal observations come in. Think about this, if you are overweight or know someone who is, how is your/ their time spent? How much TV do you watch a day? How much sleep are you getting? Do you have a desk job where you spend 8 hours a day looking at a computer? Do you play any sports? Are you active at all? Again, this is a personal observation but in my opinion a person is over-weight because they have chosen to spend their time being sedentary.
Now of course there are exceptions to this “rule”. Like those with metabolic diseases or other factors that cause them to gain weight no matter their activity level, but most over-weight people do not fall into that category. Let me be honest here, I got fat cause I was lazy, stopped exercising and ate like crap. To be honest, I gained a lot of weight while having pretty strenuous jobs. I was just extremely lazy outside of work. And I’d bet my bottom dollar that if over-weight people were honest with themselves, they’d admit they are over-weight for the same reason.
Saying you don’t have time to exercise is an excuse. Saying you can’t afford to eat right is also an excuse (more on that later). I used these “excuses” for years but it simply wasn’t true. Wanna know how long a good cardio workout should last? Um about 20-30 minutes. If the average person has 4.3 hours of extra time a day, is sacrificing 30 minutes really that big of a deal? Even the busiest person I know has 30 minutes of free time. Heck you can get a butt kicking, calorie burning cardio session done in about 5-10 minutes, no joke. The fact is we choose every day not to exercise and fill our time with something else.
I’m not asking you to give up family time, work, school or anything else that is important to go for a run. I’m just suggesting it might be a good idea for you to stop with the excuses and look at your “time” and find the space to take care of your body.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Wii Fit
- 20 minute walk/ run to start and end the day
- Aerobic exercise DVD’s
- Join a gym with Aerobic classes
- Punching bag for 15 minutes
- Resistance band work outs
- Total body weight resistance training
These are just some ideas and many of them are free. Last time I checked there is no tax or fee for running in your neighborhood. Any combination of these suggestions will work. The key is keeping your heart rate up for at least 20 minutes. My rule has always been: If I’m not sweating, I’m not working.
I hope this has helped. And of course, ff you have any questions, suggestions or exercise routines that have worked for you I’d love to hear them!