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30-Minute Workouts for Any Schedule

Contributors: Heather Mangieri, MS, RDN, CSSD, LDN

Reviewers: Academy Nutrition Information Services Team

Published: February 03, 2020

Reviewed: September 26, 2023

Family doing yoga together - 30-Minute Workouts for Any Schedule

Even with the best intentions, it's easy to let a busy weekly routine crowd out regular physical activity. Yet, the beneficial effects of exercise are undeniable. Current recommendations for adults are to get at least 150 minutes each week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, such as such as brisk walking or cycling, and to spend time two or more days each week on muscle-strengthening activities.

It doesn't have to be done all at one time. The 150 minutes can be spread out during the week, and even broken into smaller chunks of time throughout the day. Research suggests that small bouts of exercise throughout the day, compared to one prolonged bout, can be equally beneficial to one's health. In addition, smaller bouts may be easier for people to implement and maintain. So, if you can't seem to find 30 consecutive minutes in a day for your workout, you can still fit it in by splitting up the time.

To help keep exercise a priority, schedule it into your calendar like any other appointment or task. Scheduling is a straightforward way of converting an intention or activity into a long-lasting habit.

10-Minute Mini-Workouts

Try taking 10 minutes in the morning, afternoon and evening to do some form of activity. This can include 10 minutes of body weight exercises (push-ups, crunches, lunges, squats, etc.) in the morning, a 10-minute brisk walk during your lunch break at work and 10 minutes of yoga-inspired stretching in the evening.

Involve the Family in Daily Fitness

Thirty minutes will fly by if you get the kids engaged in something that they, too, can enjoy. Grab the family and head out for a walk, game of tag or bike ride.

Clean with Purpose

Don't just sweep the floor — scrub the floor. Don't just unload the dishwasher — dance with the dishes. Minutes add up fast when you move more during your clean-up time.

Look for Opportunities to Walk

Suggest work meetings on the go when you're in person or move around when meetings are by phone. Moving while meeting can foster creativity and communication. Outdoor air also improves mood and enhances collaboration.
Thirty minutes of activity can accumulate quickly when you seek out opportunities, such as taking the stairs, parking farther away from your destination or doing yard work.

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