You know why most of us hate working out? It’s because of the root word…WORK! Most of us despise being told what to do and HAVING to do it. We spend all day at our jobs, being told what to do, and oftentimes a good bit of our free time being told what to do by our significant others. (Keep that one quiet, will ya?)
So, when it comes to working out, burning calories, and losing a little weight, well…many people just don’t do it! We love that feeling of freedom, that feeling of not having anything to do and this leads many to just sit…watch TV, and unfortunately, GAIN weight. BUT…what if you could burn excess calories, and have fun at the same time? Instead of making it a chore, make it a GAME?
Ok, maybe that sounds a little crazy, but in my 11 years of personal training experience, I have found that when people can get their minds off of just exercising and instead focus on something fun, they tend to burn way more calories and work out for longer than if they just doing the traditional workout routines. Sounds cool, huh? Well, here a few ways that you can have fun WHILE burning more calories throughout your day. Take the WORK out of working out, but still lost some fat and build some muscle in the meantime!
The TV Challenge
So, maybe you didn’t think watching TV would be part of any exercise program promoted by a trainer, but let’s face it, we ALL watch TV, and simply telling someone to NOT do it, well, isn’t gonna happen. Instead, turn it into something of a game that will allow you to burn calories WHILE watching the boob tube at the same time. You can do this by trying to see how many exercises you can do during commercial breaks. Whenever a commercial comes on, you start a particular exercise. It could be pushups, body weight squats, jumping jacks, whatever. Try to do them for the entire commercial break, or if you can, write down how many you do…then, when the next commercial break hits, you try to BEAT that record.
This little game is PERFECT if you have a few friends over watching with you, especially on Football Sundays. Get the group competitive and you will see some SERIOUS calories being burned. If you can combine this one with some HEALTHY munchies (no chips or soda please) you may turn your TV watching into the thing that gets you a ripped body in time for the beach…
The Office Olympics
Many of us spend much of our day at the office. If we can use some of this time to burn some calories and get in shape, then all the better! The office Olympics is a little game you can start at your office. You all agree on a series of exercise. Again, keep them fairly traditional like pushups, squats, crunches, etc. Then, you have weekly contests to see whose numbers are the best.
Rather than JUST go for who can do the most, you can also have categories such as who has improved the most so the playing field can be a little more fair. If the boss allows it, you could treat these like a pool where everyone chips in a little money and each week, there are winners for various categories that win the prize money. The boss may even want to provide incentives as well as such an office workout competition can help lead to overall health of the team which could lead to more productivity.
Did you know your house is a gym? I don’t mean there’s a gym IN your house, I mean your house is a gym! There are all kinds of exercises you can do in your house right now that will help you burn a ton of calories while having fun at the same time. For instance, you can curl the milk jug with each hand, or you can use the bathtub to do triceps presses (sit with your back against the tub and put your hands behind you on the tub and press down and lift your butt off the ground) or you can do situps but putting your feet underneath the couch, or you can climb up and down the stairs for several sets…all KINDS of exercises are right there in front of your face!
If you want to burn some extra calories and have fun while you are stuck at the house, just identify a few exercises you can do in each room in your house, then, go through EACH room performing each exercise you have designated. Try to seem how quickly you can get through your entire house and every day, try to beat your record.
Take the Stairs
This one is simple; if you go somewhere and you have to go up at least one flight, take the stairs! This is especially effective if you are staying in a hotel on an upper floor. Just hit the stairs whenever you are leaving the hotel or going to your room…I myself try to race my friends who take the elevator, but then again, I am a little crazy. I recommend you taking your time when on the stairs, but whenever possible, TAKE EM!
Hit the Playground
I can’t tell you how many times I have passed by a playground (or taken my kids to one) and I see a bunch of kids playing, and a bunch of parents sitting. The parents sit on the benches and watch…I say forget that! Take your kids to the playground and JOIN them!
Hit the monkey bars, play chase, rediscover your inner youth! There is absolutely nothing wrong with acting like a kid at the playground and it is a PERFECT way to burn some extra calories while having loads of fun. Your kids will have a blast as well. So get your butt off the bench and join them!
Working out doesn’t always HAVE to equal work. Put some fun on your plate, turn life into a game, and burn calories, lose some excess fat, and live a little longer WITHOUT having to step foot into a gym.