Small Bits of Fitness Add Up

"Where did the day go?"

Is this a common question in your life? Many of us jam-pack so much stuff into our daily routines, seemingly there’s no time to relax for just one minute, let alone exercise. Lack of time is one of the most common excuses for not having a decent fitness regimen. But do you realize that in the time it might take you to go through your e-mail, you could fit in a good workout? We’re not talking about giving up 60 minutes either; all you need is 10.
 

Just 10?


Forget the "all or nothing" mentality when it comes to exercise. Fitness does not live or die by 60-minute workouts; there is middle ground. Short spurts of exercise, when they accumulate, have been shown to share similar benefits of longer workouts.

Your body will reap numerous benefits just by becoming more active. This approach is perfect for times when you don’t have time for a regular workout, or when you want to start off slowly and build up a routine.
 

Easier Than You Think


Treat these 10 minutes like you would a regular workout. Take one to two minutes to warm up and get the muscles ready, including stretching. Follow with at least seven minutes of exercise at a medium or high intensity. Then make sure to include a 60-second cool down.

Since it’s brief, it’s important to work at a fairly high intensity to obtain all of the benefits. Work at raising your heart and respiration rates. Just like regular workouts, try to include cardio, strength training and flexibility work in your shortened routine. Either knock out all three during the 10 minutes, or plan a 10-minute segment for each area.

Example: Push out 10 cardio minutes on the stationary bike. For strength, do push-ups, wall sits, or lift dumbbells. For flexibility, it’s helpful to just stretch every day. Work different muscle groups and keep it simple. After 10 minutes, you will feel healthier and be on your way to developing solid fitness habits.
 

But I Still Don’t Have Time


It only takes 30 minutes a day, broken up into manageable chunks of 10. Start with a quick exercise when you wake up. The second session? A lunch break is possibly the perfect time to re-energize and get the blood flowing again. The last 10-minute blitz could come in the evening, even while you are watching TV. It’s an ideal way to involve the family as well. Go for a power walk after dinner with your spouse or ride bikes with the kids.

It is all about convenience; if you try, you can fit exercise into your schedule no matter where you are. Do it at home or at work, outside or in the living room. Start building exercise spurts into your daily routine and you’ll start feeling better.

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Member Comments

It seems so simple...just 10 minutes a day.....yet I sometimes struggle with this Report
Good article, thanks. Report
ten minutes of assigned PT exercises for back alignment. plus whatever elseI I can, walking until it hurts, 10 30 minutes a day. Report
CATNAP629
good ideas Report
97MONTY
This is great info Report
great article Report
Motivation! Report
For sure I have many days when 10 minutes is all the time I can spare @ one time for exercise. BUT it definitely all adds up to fitness.

Thanks for this article. Report
97MONTY
Love the 10 minute workouts when I'm not out walking Report
I use this strategy to get in more activity at night. I'll think about just 10 more minutes of walking. Before you know it, I've done 3 or more sets of 10 minutes. Report
Going to conscientiously look those 10 minutes rather than sitting at the computer or catching a TV show Report
CATNAP629
goof ideas Report
thanks. doing ok on aerobics but need to start strength Report
I truly get more accomplished on the 10 minute cycles. II break my time up when convenient to my schedule. Report
TOMORROW-C
This works for me, every time. Report


 

About The Author

Liz Noelcke
Liz Noelcke
Liz is a journalist who often writes about health and fitness topics.