If you exercise regularly, you understand there are many more benefits other than just weight loss or staying in shape. Exercise and workplace productivity go hand in hand. Being productive and alert at work can help you get your job done faster and even make you more eligible for a promotion. If you don't exercise regularly, you could be putting your health — and your job — at risk.
Many of us don't do well alone trying to keep up with a regular exercise program alone, so for most a formal exercise program at the gym is the best way to go. Or so we think, as the time constraints of our busy day make the idea of fitting gym time in less than appealing.
If you really can’t find the time to hit the gym in the morning (and we know, mornings can be hectic, especially for working parents) then heading there after work is probably your next best option.
But after eight (or more) hours at work even if you have the time finding the motivation to actually do so can be hard. But it can be done. Here are just a handful of tips to help you get pumped to head to the gym even when you have had a long hard day at work.
Make Your Fitness Goals Your Office Decor
Most people have at least a small space, if not a whole office, which is technically designated as ‘theirs’ and can (within reason) be decorated as we please. Maybe you are the kind of person who fills theirs with family pictures. Or maybe you prefer those “Keep calm and carry on” type motivational quotes to keep you going.
Whatever the case, adding a few inspirational shape-up/stay fit messages and images can help you keep those goals in mind all day too. Doing so will also serve as a gentle little constant reminder of where you are supposed to be heading after the workday is done.
Keep Lunch Light
It’s harder to find the energy to get up and go to the gym at five when you’ve been in a semi food coma for the last few hours thanks to an over-heavy lunch. No matter what you eat, even if it’s pretty healthy – eat too much of it and your blood sugar is going to go through the roof and then plummet back down, leaving you drowsy and unproductive.
Choose a light option like a green salad or wrap and try to eat it at least four hours before gym time, because your stomach takes about three hours to clear out its contents. And if your digestive system is still working to digest your food, it’s using energy that you could be putting towards your workout.
Sensible Snacks are Permitted
If you feel like making it four hours plus gym time plus the commute home will be just a little too long between meals for you, then a sensible snack to keep you going is fine. But the emphasis here is on the sensible. Apple slices with peanut butter or a homemade trail mix of nuts and dried fruit are great, easy to eat at your desk choices.
Take Advantage of Your Personal Tech
Another way to make sure hitting the gym is on your to-do list for the day is to create a calendar reminder on your computer or set an alarm on your phone. That little signal serves as a very obvious reminder of your workout goals and can keep you from backing out because you were so busy that you forgot.
Make Your Workouts Fun
If you are finding it hard to drum up much enthusiasm for thirty minutes on a treadmill after eight hours at work, then plan on changing things up so that your gym trips become fun occasions to look forward to at the end of a hard day. If you tend to focus on cardio add the challenge of strength training, to provide you with a whole new set of fitness goals. Or book yourself into a class instead of working out solo. Not only are classes like Zumba tons of fun (it’s like going back to your dancing after work days) they are a great way to unwind and maybe even make new friends too.