How do you fit a workout in to a busy schedule?. Hutton Health

How do you fit a workout in to a busy schedule?

25th February 2023

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Life is incredibly busy and it can be challenging to find the time to exercise but moving your body is essential for your mental and physical health. Exercising and moving your body can decrease stress, help you think more clearly, increase your energy and productivity and allow you to feel strong in your mind and body.

Many of us know the importance of exercising and want to fit a workout in to the day, but with the demands of work and life, exercise can be the first thing to be missed when you are short on time.

Finding time to exercise can be a challenge when your schedule is manic. Here are tips that have helped me fit workouts in to my life despite working full time and being a single parent.


Tips to fit a workout into a busy schedule:


1. Plan ahead of time

It is important to plan a workout into your schedule. Considering your other commitments, think about the easiest time to fit a workout in, morning, during the day, or in the evening.

Schedule your workout in your calendar in the same way you record other important meetings and engagements. Treat it like an important commitment (and indeed it IS…YOU are your most important commitment!)

The other activities and locations that you need to be in may determine the type of exercise that is easiest to fit in for you.

If I am travelling to a meeting, I use any extra time when I arrive to walk and fit in steps. Even a 5 or 10 minute exercise session can help you feel better.

If you are planning to exercise in the morning, set your alarm and put your clothes out beside your bed. Reduce any barriers to waking up and starting your workout to help you stick to your plan.

Plan ahead of time to fit exercise into a busy schedule

2. Consistency is key

Committing to consistent action helps to create healthy habits. By making exercise a habit, you are more likely to fit in your workouts even when you are busy.

A trick to staying consistent is to exercise at about the same time most days. Attach workouts to a time or action, such as, you always go for a 20-minute walk when you wake up or at lunch each day.

Building exercise into your daily routine is a great way to build consistency in moving your body.

2.	Consistency is key to fit exercise into a busy schedule

3. Walking meetings

Moving your body can help increase your energy, productivity and creativity. If you have the option to connect with a colleague for a walk, either virtually or in person, it allows you to exercise while connecting over work.

Who can you connect with for a walk rather than sitting stationary during the day? Look at your schedule and consider which commitments you have that could be done while you are outside moving your body.

3.	Walking meetings can help fit exercise into a busy schedule

4. Focus on quality instead of quantity

A workout does not need to be an hour long bootcamp that leaves you dripping in sweat and exhausted. Exercise can look differently depending on your schedule and what your body needs each day.

Think about when you can fit in small bouts of movement throughout the day – squats while the kettle boils, lunges while you brush your teeth, a 5-minute walk before you make a cup of coffee. All of these movement sessions add up during the day and can be easier to fit in than one long exercise session.

Any and all forms of movement count!

4.	Focus on quality instead of quantity to fit exercise into your busy schedule

5. Find a great podcast or motivating music

I love a great podcast or upbeat, motivating music! There is definitely power in music and in words.

Create a new playlist or find a podcast that you can listen to while you are exercising, it can help motivate you to move your body on the days when you are struggling to find the time or motivation to workout.

I love Aftershokz headphones while I am exercising. The bone conducting headphones are comfortable to wear and don’t move no matter what exercise I am doing!


5.	Find a great podcast or motivating music

6. Find movement you enjoy

If you can find exercise you enjoy, you will look forward to your workouts which will make it easier for you to stick to your exercise plan.


Exercise doesn’t need to be something you dread. If you don’t connect with a particular form of exercise, try something different!


If you aren’t comfortable attending a group fitness space or gym, there are plenty of options for workout out from the comfort of your home.

6.	Find movement you enjoy

7. Focus on progress not perfection

It is important to be able to go with the flow, to accept when a workout doesn’t go to plan, and to focus on the small steps you are able to take toward progress.

I often say, life gets ‘lifey’. This makes it hard to stick to routine and can make plans change. Doing the best you can in the moment and each day will help you continue to progress, even though it may not be the ‘perfect’ workout that you had planned or scheduled.

Being too focused on ‘perfect’ can keep you from moving your body on the days when you find yourself short on time or lacking energy for the workout you were hoping for.

7.	Focus on progress not perfection

8. Incorporate more movement into your day

Another tip to fit workouts into a busy schedule is to change your thinking about exercise.

Exercise doesn’t need to be a structured workout, a run, or a planned fitness session. Any purposeful movement is good movement.

Changing your thinking around exercise from fitting in a particular workout to just incorporating more movement into your day can help you progressing even when your life is hectic.

Increase your movement by:

  • Parking in a further away spot
  • Taking the stairs rather than the lift
  • Use a standing desk rather than sitting down through the work day
  • Incorporate walk and talk meeting
8.	Incorporate more movement into your day to fit exercise into your busy schedule

9. Include family and friends

Exercising with your friends and family helps to create a healthy lifestyle and build accountability around movement.

Workout out and moving your body with your family members helps to model movement as a key part of the day.

Exercising with others helps make exercise fun!

Unsure you would like to share your fitness and health journey with your loved ones, but would like to have the accountability and motivation of a coach? Read this previous blog to find out 5 benefits of working with a health and fitness coach.

Hutton Health offers a monthly membership as well as personalised programs to help you reach your health and fitness goals! Join a supportive and encouraging community of people on the same journey of health as you.


9.	Include family and friends to fit exercise into your busy schedule

You and the only person who can prioritise your health, fitness and wellbeing. Commit to moving your body so you feel strong in your mind and in your body.

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