What exercise is the best for me and how do I maximize my limited time during exercise? We get these question all of the time. My answer is always personalized; it depends! It depends on your goals, your barriers, and your specific lifestyle quirks. There is no BEST exercise, but there are specific benefits of exercise depending on your time commitment and your goals. The bottom line is that you do not have to skip a workout just because you have less time than you want. It is more important to keep the commitment to the habit than it is to keep the commitment to the exact exercise routine. Simply put, doing 5 minutes of exercise instead of 30-40 minutes is better than doing none. It is because the brain will still recognize a five-minute work out as sticking to a routine, but if you skip it you break the routine and the habbit. Instead, try these modifications based on the time you have available.
- Have 45 minutes 3 x a week and want to improve fitness?- Try a total body strength training program: Lightweight and high reps for lean muscle maintenance, or high weight and low reps for muscle building
- Have 30 minutes each day and want to lose weight?- Try a moderate-intensity cardiovascular exercise like a brisk walk, a moderate bike ride, a light jog or a swim!
- Have 12 minutes each day and want to improve heart health?- Try a moderate-intensity cardiovascular activity from above or kick it up a notch with a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) program; 3 rounds of (30 seconds of exercise/30 seconds of rest x Squats, Burpees, Plank, Push-ups)
- Have 5 minutes a day and want to improve mental clarity?- Try my recipe for a 5-minute Morning Routine! That is right, you heard me, just 5 minutes of light exercise can decrease your cortisol levels, balance your stress hormones, and improve your mental health!
No matter where you are or what your schedule is like, you can always fit in a little movement.