When it comes to exercise, I am first and foremost, a runner. I run for many reasons – for exercise, the freedom it gives me, etc, but I also love to run because it is a great calorie-burning sport. Running truly is one of the best ways to burn calories and lose weight, but it is definitely not the only way.
To burn calories and eventually lose weight, you can walk, bike, swim, or do anything that keeps you moving at a moderate to fast pace for at least 30 minutes a day. And the exercise doesn’t have to be a dedicated sport either. It can simply be adding in more moderate intensity movement throughout your day. For instance, even though I burn plenty of calories running, I still try to move as much as I can throughout the day to give my metabolism and my heart an extra boost. Here are some of my favorite ways to move and burn extra calories at work and at home…
- A few times a week, I try to take a brisk walk at lunch, whether it’s at a nearby mall or around the neighborhoods near my office.
- Instead of or in addition to instant messaging or sending an email, I try to take a quick walk to deliver a colleague’s message. In most cases, more face time with other co-workers, especially those at the senior level, is a good thing.
- When coworkers suggest heading out for lunch, I try to find a place that’s close enough for all of us to walk.
- If I’m feeling sluggish at work and don’t have time for a walk, I’ll do a few standing leg raises (lift your leg straight back while holding onto the back of a chair) or stretches in my office or in a closed conference room.
- Any excuse I have to go out to my car, I take it. I park at the far end of the lot so it’s a fast 10 minutes roundtrip. It’s a great energy boost, while burning calories at the same time.
- I have very thick wavy hair that takes forever to dry, even with a blow dryer. To add extra movement during these 15 minutes, I do lunges and squats while drying my hair. If you’re not used to these, take it easy because you WILL feel it the next day!
- Whenever my husband and I go out to eat, we try to add in some type of activity before or after our meal, ie. walking around at the bookstore or the mall.
- When eating at home, I like to take a walk with my husband and the kids before or after the meal. It’s a great way to relax and reconnect. If it’s bad weather, I crank up the music and dance around with the kids in the living room. They love it and I still get to burn extra calories.
- When we look for weekend family activities, we try to incorporate movement in some way. This could be swimming at our YMCA, walking around at the city museum or zoo, going for a hike, or going to the play park.
- I walk up and down my stairs an much as I can – with or without laundry or a child in tow.
How do you fit in extra movement throughout the day?