How to Exercise Without Even Noticing, According to Harvard Health

Updated 05/08/19
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We've officially reached peak workout season, and people everywhere are sloughing off their winter layers and dragging themselves to the nearest yoga class. But if, like me, you've had a difficult time coming out of winter hibernation mode and actually make it to said exercise class (or engaging in any physical activity at all), Harvard Health has some tips for you. 

Edward Phillips, MD, assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Harvard Medical School, suggests something called "piggybacking" to pack more physical activity into your average day. In the publication, he essentially encourages people to "find creative ways to 'piggyback' activity onto things you're already doing regularly." For example, he suggests standing or walking every time you're talking on the phone, and finding a few favorite podcasts or audiobooks to make daily walks or runs more bearable. 

Another trick is to park far away from the entrance of a store when shopping to get some extra steps in, or park in a central location and walk to as many shops as possible. "You can even use toothbrushing time to get in a little balance exercise," he recommends. Phillips actually "uses an electric toothbrush that buzzes every 30 seconds, which prompts him to switch from standing on one leg to the other leg." Something as simple as opting for the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator in your office building, or doing a short yoga flow in your bedroom before work every day, are surefire ways to slowly ease yourself back into the routine of exercising. 

Head over to Harvard Health for more.


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