Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Fitness Diary :: Making Time to Exercise

I've been exercising a bit more this year, and a lot more recently. For the last few weeks I've actually been running 5 times per week, on top of my abs and arms exercises at home.

You guys know that I've been taking Korean language classes this year, and I'll be completing my basic course in a few weeks. It has been fun and very enriching, but I'm going to take a break to revise and soak it all in.

Also, I want to take up Muay Thai again :) I used to take classes with the boy and liked it a lot. It really pushes my physical strength to the limit and kept me really fit. With my current schedule, I can't fit in 2 personal enrichment classes per week away from family time, so I'm gonna start Muay Thai after I end my Korean classes. In the meantime, I'm building up my endurance again by going for runs and exercising more. You really need a lot of energy for those high kicks and powerful  punches!

I run in the evenings on weekdays, and while Lil Pumpkin naps during the weekends. Sometimes the boy and Lil Pumpkin will join me on my evening runs too so it gets to be a family thing where we all exercise and stay healthy together :)

At first it was really hard to get my butt off the couch and to get my body moving. Especially after a hard day at work, or if we get home late. However, the boy has been really supportive and reminds me of my 30 before 30 goals. I'll write an update on the list soon {!!} but there's one goal there to lose 5kgs haha. The boy helps to look after Lil Pumpkin while I run, and will tell me to "just go and run!" if I complain to him that I'm tired and it's already 9pm. Exactly what I need to hear ;p

Don't worry, I only run in lighted areas and surprisingly, there are actually a lot of people exercising at that late hour so it's rather safe. I guess that's the time when most busy adults can make time for exercise.

And yes, we all should make the effort to make time for exercise. More than about losing weight, it is about our entire well-being. "No time" is not an excuse. If we have time for television, time to socialise online, time to shop... we have time to exercise. If we don't, do we have the time to deal with health problems from living a sedentary lifestyle?

I feel even more alert and alive, rather than tired, after my runs. Each time I run a bit further, I feel pretty accomplished because it's a case of mind over matter. So fantastic and I'm glad I made exercising part of my schedule now, rather than doing it "if I have time". If you need more encouragement to make time for exercising, here are 5 quick tips:

1. Schedule it in
Decide when's the best time for you to exercise and schedule it in like a meeting so it doesn't clash with other appointments. For me, it's weekday evenings and weekend afternoons. Maybe it's mornings or lunchtime for you. Stick to your plan and it will soon become a regular routine.

2. Start small
You don't need to commit 1 hour a day. Start small, e.g. a walk up the stairs or getting down the bus 2 stops earlier to walk back, and slowly build up your exercise time. I started with just 10 mins runs, to 20 mins runs 5 times a week now.

3. Do from home
Don't worry about joining a gym or having expensive equipment to exercise. There are so many fun and free activities to do, even from home! While watching TV, do some crunches, squats or push-ups. Pick up a bottle filled with water and do some arm lifts. Check out some of the home-based workouts here.

4. Get the kids involved
Run and climb with your kids at outdoor play, rather than sitting by the side with a book or chatting with the other parents. They are such energiser bunnies and will sure get your heart racing! Do some arm-lifts when carrying your baby, and go for more stroller walks or family hikes. I'm sure they will enjoy these active family time with you, like how Lil Pumpkin loves to exercise with us!

5. Have a cheerleader 
Sometimes it's easy to start, but to keep going can be a killer. Have someone to support you emotionally and motivate you when the going gets tough, like what the boy is doing for me. It can be a friend, spouse, or maybe an exercise group in your area like at the community centres.

Remember, doing something is better than nothing!!! :) If you're having regular exercises or runs, let me know and we can be {virtual} exercise buddies too!


Serenely said...

Good on you! I think it takes a tremendous amount of discipline to maintain a fitness regime. You are definitely walking the talk (or running the talk in this case!)

Twitchy said...

Good on you! I've noticed so many more mums going out and getting fit. While I do walk my dog and have just started tap classes, running and getting off the couch otherwise are still in the too-hard-basket for me :/ #teamIBOT

Rhianna said...

Good on you for making the time and getting out there, I know it is on my to do list but I just rarely seem to get it done!

mail4rosey said...

How lucky for you to A). have your support behind you and B). have a well lit, populated place to run at night!

Unknown said...

Well done! Jia you!

Running gives lots of endorphins and we are really blessed in this country that girls can run at all times with no fear. Used to see many ladies running early in the morning when I used to run with the hubs. :)

Jodi said...

Yes it if is scheduled in or on your "to do list" each day, or every other day, then it is easier to do! :)

Emily @ Have A Laugh On Me said...

Those are quite inspirational Ai - especially for someone like me, who can always seem to find an excuse not to exercise. Muay Thai would be fab - such a great all round fitness regime! Can I ask if that is a real tattoo on your shoulder? And wow Pumpkin looks so GORGEOUS in that selfie of you both!

Susan said...

Great to see you getting active. Totally agree that no time is no excuse. And I ought to be ashamed that I've not been as active these days. I sure need a virtual exercise buddy to keep me reminded to get my butt off the couch. I'll be taking part in the vertical marathon next time and will have to find time and make time to train for it.

Unknown said...

Good for you! Keep up the great work. Running has always been my favourite form of exercise..and I find it so relaxing and a good de-stresser :) Your hair is just too cute!! And of course lil pumpkin is too ;) hehe

Unknown said...

I'm doing a 12 week challenge at the moment. But with 2 under 2 it takes a fair bit of planning and commitment. Thanks for the tips and encouragement. Good luck x

Ai Sakura said...

Serene: thanks! I'm trying hard to keep it as a routine and started this fitness diary to stay accountable haha

Twitchy: it definitely helps when more people are doing it and encouraging one another! I think walks and dance are great exercises too!

Rhianna: go go go! you can do it!

Jodi: indeed :)

Emily: haha yes it is! haven't you seen it on IG?

Susan: come come I can be your virtual exercise buddy ;p

Brandi: aww thanks!

Kate: oh the 12 wbt? I want to have a look at that too. Know a few other ladies that are doing that and they seem to like it

mail4rosey: I am :)

Lyndis: I know what you mean! Really blessed that we can feel relatively safe outdoors, even at night.

Missus Tay said...

babe, this is inspiring! i have cut down on my tv and don't even have much time to blog these days. shall look into where i can squeeze more time out to get some exercises done!

oomph. said...

yep, there's always time. and it doesn't have to be "exercise". shooting hoops with the kids or playing catch is exercise, too! i run on the treadmill every night after the kids go to bed. i have no problem exercising...it's my kids that are getting lazy, lol! i need to get creative and find ways to motivate them.

EssentiallyJess said...

Boatman laughs at me cause I quite often run around the living room for 40 minutes, but I say at least it's exercise! It gets my heart rate up, builds a sweat and makes me feel great, plus it works with my life! So I'm going to keep doing it!