Harvard University is known for its academic excellence worldwide. Their school of public health works to promote healthy living in every way possible. In an article by the Nutrition Source, they outline how regular activity can prevent your risk of disease, help control stress, improve mood, cognitive function and help you keep a healthy weight. It’s also important to note however, that 30 minutes of a physical activity during the day is a great way to achieve all of these things without being a gym buff or a marathoner. (https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/staying-active/)

Realistically it’s not always that easy to imagine even fitting 30 minutes into your already busy schedule. You have to get up every day and go to work, your lunch breaks are short and you need that time to eat and try to find the energy to finish your day. When you get home, you’re tired and have to start on dinner. Then, once you’re finished doing the dishes, lets face it, you’re exhausted. All you want to do is curl up by the TV and watch your favourite show before you go to bed and start your day all over again 6-8 hours later.

This is an average adult’s day, and it doesn’t leave a lot of room for that 30 minutes of regular exercise or physical activity.

But…what if physical activity wasn’t as black and white as we usually imagine. What if it included things beyond the confines of running, cycling, weights, etc. Taking your dog for a half hour walk every evening, for example, would actually check that 30 minute task off your to do list. Going grocery shopping counts as well. Cooking, yoga, cleaning (like doing the dishes), gardening, pilates, etc…The reality is that you’re probably already getting some kind of 30 minute activity in during the day even if you don’t think it counts.

Feel good about yourself for walking your dog, doing the dishes after dinner, cooking dinner, or doing some seated yoga while you watch that treasured tv. You are a rockstar, and the reality is that once you’ve realized you’re already achieving that 30 minute mark, its easier to fit in a longer work out, golf day, power yoga class or whatever makes you feel great about yourself over the weekend or intermittently throughout the week.

So before you look at the 30 active minutes a day that Harvard University and many other health institutions recommend, try and find the places in your day that you’re already hitting that 30 minutes without even meaning to. It will help  you realize that you’re actually doing pretty darn good and don’t need to beat yourself up.

Stay confident and the rest will come, you’re doing the best you can, and that is more enough for now.

-A

Published by Alexandra Besoi