Easy Exercise Tips for Home, Work, or School

"The guidelines state that we should aim for 30 minutes of moderately intense activity on five or more days of the week or vigorous activity for at least 20 minutes on three or more days of the week," says Ruth Ann Carpenter, MS, RD, LD, director of dissemination at The Cooper Institute in Dallas and author of Active Living Every Day. "This can be done in 10-minute time slots," she adds.
  • Walk to work or school, or park a good distance away.
  • Take the stairs; if you really want to workout your legs, take every other step.
  • Instead of fast-forwarding through commercials while watching your favorite shows on TIVO, do jumping jacks or march in place during the commercial break.
  • When you pick up your kid, you can use it as an opportunity to do a squat.  Pick up your kid by bending down at your legs and then driving up from your knees and hips.
  • Whether it's your cat's litter or a huge thing of laundry detergent, try to fire off 10-12 bicep curls.  Pause, recover, and do it three times to get in some strength training.
  • Sit on an exercise ball while you do your work, instead of a chair.  This will help you to develop core strength.
  • Use a headset versus a phone, and use dumbbells while at your desk.
  • You can do neck rolls, shoulder rolls, and stretch your quadriceps or hamstrings while standing at your desk.
  • Go for a walk during your lunch break.
"There are a variety of health benefits that come out of being more physically active," exercise physiologist Robyn Stuhr, executive vice president of the American Council on Exercise (ACE) in San Diego, Calif. "But if you need to lose a significant amount of weight, improve your stamina, or achieve a higher degree of cardiovascular protection then you may need higher intensity exercise.”
"Nothing is a problem, something is good, and more is better up to a point," adds Stuhr, "I think people hesitate when they think they have blown a big workout opportunity, but you don't always need to do a whole routine. Anything you can do to increase activity over the course of the day is good."