Saturday, March 28, 2009

Staying Fit and Healthy: Who Has the Time?

Learn simple strategies to fit healthy behaviors into your busy day. By Laurie Salomon A common lament among women is that they have no time to take care of themselves. And it’s true that working full-time, raising a family, taking care of a household, and possibly caring for older relatives all can take their toll. Never mind exercise or eating well--how can you possibly cook or drag yourself to the gym when you don’t even get enough sleep? The key to staying fit when you’re pressed for time is not to think of the pursuit of health purely as a chunk of time spent at the gym or cooking fancy dishes. According to the Mayo Clinic, multitasking can yield significant health benefits. For instance: Make time for breakfast. There are fast, healthful options in the frozen-food case. Try an organic burrito or microwaveable steel-cut oats. Before you go to bed, prepare a bowl of dry cereal and just add milk in the morning. It’s that easy. Ramp up your normal walk with Fido. Don’t just let the dog out into the yard—strap on a leash and walk him. If you usually stroll around the neighborhood at a leisurely pace, take it up a level or two. Move briskly, and find a few hills. Add a slow jog if you can. Not only will you get your heart rate up, but your dog will gain some fitness benefits as well. Make ready-to-eat foods your new best friend. There are more and more healthful options all the time. Always have a bag of pre-washed greens on hand for dinner salads. Frozen vegetables can be quickly mixed with precooked chicken slices or precooked shrimp. A loaf of whole-wheat bread and container of fruit salad round out a perfect meal. Turn TV time into workout time. Do you normally collapse in front of the tube at the end of the day? Instead, stash some weights near the sofa and do biceps curls while you catch up on your favorite shows. See how many crunches you can fit in during commercials, or get up 15 minutes early and jump rope while you watch the morning news. Clean it like you mean it. Mopping, scrubbing, vacuuming, and dusting can be challenging if you do them intensely enough. For lawn chores, give up the ride-on mower and use an old-fashioned push mower to get your heart pumping. Or do squats as you pull weeds. You’ll certainly feel it the next day. Article courtesy of Quality Health

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