How to Save Money and Get Fit at Work

get fit at workMost of us now have sit down jobs. We don’t get much exercise by doing our jobs an certainly do not get fit at work. After all, how many calories can you really spend typing at the computer?

Many of us do not have the money or the time to spend at the gym after work or on the weekends to even out our passive week days with some active pursuits.

So, what can one do to get fit at work? Here are a few suggestions that worked for me.

Start early.

Begin a new habit of scraping out a half hour in the morning, either by rising earlier, having the kids become more self-sufficient before school, or skipping that last cup of coffee. Find a routine or two (a disc, a program or simply a set of exercises) you can do at home without a lot of prep or follow up time. For years I exercised for 30 or 45 minutes before showering and dressing for work. I’d get the kids started on their morning routine, then disappear into the bedroom to follow a dvd exercise routine, then pop back out to get them on their way before hitting the shower and taking off for work.

Use lunch to Get Fit at Work.

Instead of gorging at the local deli on your lunch break, get out and move. Walk, jog, start a group session in an unused meeting room to do yoga, stretching or non-odor producing movements off any kind. You can even do sit down exercises, like under the table leg lifts.

Look for opportunities in the community as well. I used to work right next door to the outdoor ice skating rink. There was a lunch skate for a dollar plus skate rental. I learned to skate, burned calories and had fun without getting too sweaty (it was winter).

Join the company team.

Many companies compete in Corporate Challenge games. In my area, the events take place in the spring but the team’s are selected in the winter. Your HR department may be able to put you in contact with the company participants that like to Most of us now have sit down jobs. We don’t get much exercise by doing our jobs an certainly do not get fit at work. Usually events include things like walking; horseshoes; tennis; basketball; baseball; fishing; bowling; darts; pool; track and field; trap shooting, tug of war and etc – and others as well. Swimming and track events (and possibly others) compete in age groups – so you may have more or less competition to get on a team based on how old you are. Sign up, try out, practice with the team. All that practice (and fear of embarrassment) will keep you moving. When I was around mid fifties, I started jogging on the treadmill at a YMCA close to work. The team coordinator for track noticed me (and my age) and asked me to join the team since there weren’t many my age running. I ran the quarter, half, mile and 5 k. I did a lot of practicing the years I ran the corporate challenge!

Get your company involved in volunteer activities.

Start a community garden (lots of activity there for many folks), start a Habitat for Humanity project with team mates, participate in company client events (such as golf tournaments), relationship building events (such as active games) or find some other active volunteer work that would benefit both you and the company.

The company from which I retired sponsored a company garden. Company volunteers planted, watered, weeded then harvested the vegetables. The local food bank used the harvest to help feed the homeless. The benefit was three-fold – good PR for the company, feel good activity for the employees and food for the homeless.

Build networks after work.

You might be surprised at what your company may be offering unannounced to help build good employee relations. My last company paid for a bowling league. I bowled free of charge with other employees once a week. That’s better than sitting at home in front of the TV. Of course, you have to try to avoid drinking the soda and beer and eating the burger and fries! Perhaps your company has a softball team or organized a volleyball team or sponsors a company charity run. If so, sign up!

Ditch the car.

Walk to the bus stop, save money, get exercise and help keep the ozone layer. If you live in a close enough distance and walk-able community, just walk all the way. Ride your bike to and from work if you have safe trails (consider taking a change of clothes in the summer time though).

What do you do to save money to get fit at work?

photo by: sanchom

10 Tips on how to motivate yourself to exercise more

Exercise is one of those things that you’re either committed to and gung-ho about, doing it anytime you can and feeling bad anytime you can’t, or the complete opposite. The advantage of being addicted to exercise is that you’re probably fit already and all you need is to tone it down a little.

But if you belong to the opposite crowd, those who drag themselves to the gym or fall asleep lacing up their running shoes, then you have bigger fish to fry: lack of motivation. But how do you motivate yourself to get off the couch and exercise? I’ve listed a few simple ways to motivate yourself and stay motivated so you can wear your shapewear with confidence.

  1. If you’re overweight, take a photo of yourself (or find the most unglamorous one) and stick it in the refrigerator. This way, every time you attack the icebox for a snack, you’ll see yourself and think twice about eating, maybe even spur you to do a quick workout right at that moment.
  1. Use your Smartphone and set up alarms like crazy. Turn your phone into a nagging personal trainer. Key in the words “Time to Move!” or “Get Busy!” or whatever motivational speech you want to nudge yourself out the door for some much needed exercise.
  1. If you enrolled for gym or Zumba class, use your Smartphone’s calendar to remind you not to miss it. It’s already paid for, so you really need to go. Add a reminder that you’re throwing your money away if you don’t show up. Money, like health, is always a good motivator.
  1. Set up visual reminders that you need to exercise. Purposely leave your running shoes where you can see them every day. Leave your yoga mat near your desk. Set up your exercise equipment so that it’s the first thing you’ll see when you step out of the bedroom.
  1. Talk yourself into doing it. This may sound nuts, but talking to yourself and psyching yourself up is a very effective way to get things done. Tell yourself repeatedly that exercise is good for you and that to have a healthy future for you and your family, you need to be healthy now. Just don’t talk to yourself in public.
  1. Find an exercise buddy to hold you accountable. It could be your spouse, bff, or anyone close to you that you can entrust with this. It’s important that you find someone that will be with you all the way and not give in to you when you want to quit. They have to push you, and call you out when you’re being lazy.
  1. Speaking of lazy, when you’re de-motivated to work out, always remember that it’s the old you who’s whispering in your ear. The old, unhealthy, overweight version of you sitting on the couch with a bag of chips and ice cream. This old version of you loves to sabotage things, and is behind all the laziness and overeating. Don’t let this obsolete version of you win and hold back the new and healthier you. Fight back by not caving in to laziness. Fight back by working out.
  1. Find a place that inspires you to workout. This could be anywhere; your home, garage, gym, park, trail, train yard; it doesn’t matter! As long as this place is special to you and you’re amped up just to be here, always do your workouts here. Being in a familiar and comfortable environment helps with motivation.
  1. Visualize your body’s transformation and what you’re going to look like after all is said and done. Visualize how you’ll be better at doing a lot of the things that you previously sucked at, like sports and other athletic endeavors and how better you’re going to feel because of your new found health.
  1. Remain positive and confident no matter what happens. You may not see results as quickly as you’d hoped, and that’s OK. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and so will your body. It takes time to be fit and healthy and by staying motivated and sticking with the program, you are headed in the right direction.

Being motivated and staying motivated starts from within, and if you really want to change and shape your future to be on the healthy side of things, following the tips above can help you achieve success.