How can I get enough exercise?

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Answered by: Rebecca, An Expert in the Healthy Living 101 Category
We all know that exercise is important to stay healthy and fit, but many people find it challenging to get the 150 minutes of exercise per week that the CDC recommends for adults. Barriers to exercise include lack of time, lack of money, lack of interest, and lack of energy. You can overcome these barriers and get enough exercise.

~Lack of Time

You live a busy life and juggle many priorities. With everything that you have going on, how can you fit in exercising too? One method is to make exercising part of your life. Consider getting a pedometer and setting yourself a goal of 5,000 or 10,000 steps a day. Park your car further from the entrance to the store or walk in place while waiting for the oven to preheat.

Exercising in short spurts throughout the day is just as effective as setting aside 30 minutes at a time. Fitting in 150 minutes of exercise seems like a lot, but doing 10 minutes of walking at lunch or before dinner is manageable. If you can find two or three opportunities a day, you will reach your goal for the week. Instead of scheduling your day around your workout, exercise for a few minutes when you have a break from another activity.

~Lack of Money

Exercising does not have to cost anything! Joining a gym may be too expensive for your budget, but that does not mean you can't exercise. In nice weather, walking or running around your neighborhood or a park is a wonderful way to get enough exercise. When the weather is bad, check out your local mall for walking groups or window shopping. Strength training can be done through using body weight only, including doing push ups and crunches. If you are a fan of exercise classes, there are many free workout videos available online or through streaming video services.

~Lack of Interest

Choose exercises that are fun for you. If you enjoy nature, look for hiking trails in local park or nature preserves. If you are motivated by competition, look for local sporting leagues or time yourself completing a mile and keep improving your time. Keep it social to improve your experience. Find a work out buddy to walk with you or go to the gym. You can motivate each other and have fun together.

~Lack of Energy

Taking care of your health may improve your energy level. As you begin exercising, you may find that your energy improves on its own. Eating healthier and getting enough sleep are also important to staying energetic. If you find that your energy level is consistently low, consider seeing your doctor to rule out medical conditions.

Once you decide to start exercising, set your start date and goals. However you plan to get your 150 minutes in, remember to set yourself a reward for each milestone that you reach. You may not reach your goal every week, but each week is a new start and any exercise is better than none. After a couple months of pushing, you will start to get used to your new habit and feel the benefits.

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