OK, I fully admit it: I don't really like exercise, and I never have. But that doesn't mean I also don't think exercise is good for me, which is why I'm always on the lookout for hacks for people who hate exercise.
There's always been something vaguely suspicious to me about the self-proclaimed exercise junkie. Why would you ever want to make your body hurt and tired when there are so many other amazing things you could be doing, like relaxing on a couch while catching up on the latest Kanye/Taylor drama? That being said, I can't ignore the wealth of data out there that tells us that getting moving is incredibly beneficial. According to the Mayo Clinic, exercise helps us with everything from increasing our energy levels, to helping us sleep better, to even improving our moods.
So the question then becomes, how can someone like myself, a natural-born couch potato, incorporate more movement into my life? To find out, I emailed with personal trainer and running enthusiast Kyanna Buchanan to gather some tips on ways to make moving less painful.
If you're a fellow non-exercise lover and can totally relate, here are Simone's top tips.
1. Turn Something You Love Into Something Active
Buchanan first and foremost recommends brainstorming how you can meld something you already like doing into something that also gets you moving. "For example, if you're an artist, taking a hike to grab inspiration for your next piece would be an excellent way to combine your passion and exercise," Buchanan says.
2. Use Your Commute
If you take public transportation on a regular basis, Buchanan suggests getting off a stop or two earlier than you need to and walking the rest of the way. Or, if you drive, she says to try to find a parking space not as close to the store, meaning you'll be getting in some extra steps without even really noticing.
3. Use Your Bathroom Breaks To Your Advantage
You don't necessarily need to book an hour and a half of your day for a vigorous workout to get the benefits of moving more. Buchanan says one of her favorite tips is simply, "doing a set of 12 squats each time you use the bathroom (I find this to be one of my favorites)." I personally love this tip, because I also find that small bursts of movement give me little bursts of energy, which is always helpful throughout the workday.
4. Don't Forget About Weight Training
"One of the biggest misperceptions I find that people, mostly females, have about exercise is about strength and weight training. A lot of females believe if they pick up a weight, they're instantly going to become a body builder," Buchanan says. So if you're one of those people who only associates things like treadmills and ellipticals with working out, you may be forgetting about an entire side of exercising that you might really enjoy (and also, really benefit from).
OK, this last one is actually a personal tip and it just comes from years of experience of seeing what really gets me moving. I've always found that dancing is essentially secret exercise — as in I can do it for several hours, have a blast, and not even think about the fact that I'm being active. If this is true for you, think about signing up for a dance class, looking for fun dance parties in your area ('80s Nights, anyone?), or simply turning up the jams for a few minutes when you're home alone.
A more active lifestyle doesn't have to mean hours of grueling exercise and buckets of sweat each day. It can be about small adjustments you make on a daily basis to ensure that you also reap the awesome rewards of moving more. So go forth fellow couch lovers, and be active!
Images: Pexels (6); Bustle