Too busy, broke, or unmotivated to exercise? Need to know some free and easy ways to exercise without actually working out?
I’ve got you.
Listen: I am ALL FOR working out, personally. It’s a half hour to an hour dedicated to YOU and your health. Daily workouts have so many benefits, not just for your body, but also your mind.
And it can be the most fun part of your day, if you play your cards right!
However I get it: life gets busy, times are tough and sometimes you just can’t face a date with your yoga mat.
Or maybe you’re already working out and are looking for ways to still be active on your rest days or throughout the rest of your day because let’s face it: a workout is still just a 24th of your day: it’s a great idea to remain moderately active throughout your day.
But unless you’re a gym instructor or have a physical job, maintaining a physical lifestyle can be a tough gig.
Here’s the good news: there are MYRIAD ways to exercise without working out.
Every little bit of movement TOTALLY counts and will make a big difference to your overall health and fitness levels.
Here are 30 of my top suggestions for staying naturally active throughout your day and getting lots of exercise without working out.
30 Free & Easy Ways to Exercise Without “Working Out”
- Go for a walk before dinner (if it’s safe to do so)
- Swap out your desk chair for a stability ball and work on your posture, or consider investing in a sit stand desk
- Do some gardening – it can burn 200 – 450 calories an hour
- Always park in the car park farthest away
- Clean your house – an hour of vigorous cleaning burns 170 – 190 calories
- Play a game of football/catch/cricket in the park with your family and/or friends
- Go swimming (my favourite) – whether in a pool, or a local natural water source that’s safe to swim at for your experience level
- When catching the bus or train to work, get off a stop earlier than your regular stop and walk the difference (again, if it’s safe to do so)
- Don’t sit or stand to take phone calls – pace around and get your steps in
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator
- Walk over and talk to your colleagues instead of sending emails (if you’re working in an office – might be a bit tricky if you’re working from home)
- Take up a fun new hobby like hula hooping, roller skating or skipping rope
- Throw the Frisbee for your dog – the ab burn is real!
- Go for a hike in nature
- Put on a playlist of your all time favourite dance tunes and dance it out
- Ride your bike to local places instead of taking the car
- Get a group of friends together and play a childhood game, like ultimate tag
- Set a timer to go off every 50 minutes, get up and stretch, do sit ups, or dance
- Take a few minutes to stretch your body before getting out of and into bed
- Do sneaky calf raises while waiting in line or doing the dishes
- Next time your friend wants to meet for coffee, suggest grabbing it to go and taking a walk while you sip your beverage
- In summertime, start an impromptu water fight with the family
- Hog your kids’ trampoline and bounce away (wear a good sports bra). Rebounding has so many benefits for your body!
- Suggest a physical activity for your next date night instead of sitting at a restaurant – think mini golf, ten pin bowling, or laser tag
- Try adding one “active” game on games night, like charades or Twister
- Do 10 squats every time you use the bathroom
- Get away from your desk at lunch time and go for a brisk walk in the sunshine (make sure to wear sunscreen)
- Drink plenty of water! Not only will you need to get up more often for refills, but you’ll also need to get up for bathroom breaks
- Cook dinner at home rather than ordering in or sitting at a restaurant. All that moving and grooving in that kitchen adds up
- Use your ad breaks constructively! Ugh, ad breaks are the worst. Make it a rule to get up in the ad breaks, whether it’s to race to the loo and back, quickly tidy the kitchen, or bust out a few sit-ups. Those little spurts of activity will pay off in the long run!
Working out is great for you but sometimes real life happens and you can’t make it to the gym. However, by building an active lifestyle, you’ll be able to ensure that you get plenty of heart healthy, strengthening activity that will keep you fit and healthy for life.
What’s your favourite “non-workout” way to stay active? Let me know in the comments.