Deepali Mehta used to be a fitness fiend. Her fitness regimen comprised an hour of cardio in the morning and an hour of weight training in the evening, at least six days a week. She followed this schedule diligently despite her professional commitments. But things changed when she took up a new job, which involved long hours of travel.
She sighs, “My workouts went for a toss. I skipped them for almost three weeks. To make matters worse, my stringent diet also went haywire. I put on weight.. and worse, inches too. That was so depressing! I just didn’t have the time nor the will to work out any more.”
This crazy routine continued for a month till she realised that this could be the beginning of the end. A paranoid Deepali resolved to wake up early in the morning and resume her exercise routine. It took her a week of regular workouts to get back to her svelte form. But she was well aware that the kilos would pile on if she slacked again.
Gaurav Kapoor too followed a strict fitness regime and was in a similar predicament when he switched job. But unlike Deepali, he continued with his cardio workouts in the mornings but skipped gym in the evenings.
Then he started alternating between cardio and weight training in the mornings. This way he ended up with most of his evenings free during the week. But Deepali and Gaurav are rare cases. Most of us quit exercising because of time constraints.. and continue to do so till faced with serious health issues.
Reebok Master trainer Vinata Shetty advises incorporating fitness into one’s busy lifestyle if one genuinely is too busy or too tired to work out.
A simple way is walking home (at least a part of the way, if you live far away) from work, climbing up and down the stairs a few times during the day, getting up from your seat and talking to a co-worker in person instead of e-mailing or using the phone and moving around when you talk on the cell.
At home, you can get up and switch off the TV instead of using the remote, meet friends for walks instead of coffee, take the kids out to the park or play a game with them on weekends instead of going out for a movie and dinner. The idea is to become more active, whether you are at home or in office.
I recall Milind Soman who refused to buy a car because he wanted to jog home after shoots. That was the only time he could spare for his fitness routine.
Shetty sums it up with, “No time is just a mindset. Those who don’t have the will to work out will find excuses, the rest will look for solutions.”