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According to the World Health Organization, adults aged 18-64 should do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity throughout the week, which breaks down to 30 minutes, five days a week. The report states physical activity doesn’t have to mean going to the gym, but it can instead include leisure time activity (walking, dancing, gardening, hiking, swimming), transportation (walking, cycling), household chores, sports, planned exercise and more.

But the burning question remains: how can I incorporate 30 minutes of exercise into a busy schedule? After a long day, who isn’t tempted to just head back home and watch a tv show? If your hectic lifestyle doesn’t allow you to exercise because you’ve already made plans go to the supermarket, attend a language class, meet a friend for dinner or finish your English paper, you’ll be surprised to read you don’t have to give up your screen time, or any other activity that you're currently involved with if you follow the following advices:

Improve your daily commute

Daily commute

You're on your way to your morning lecture and are about to check the bus times? This time, why don’t you rethink your commute and take a walk instead? Since it is part of your daily routine, you won’t even have to make extra time for it! A recent research study published in the American College of Cardiology found that one hour of physical activity per day, which could mean taking a brisk walk or bike cycling, eliminates the association between sitting time and death and cuts down the chance to develop many diseases. 

Be an active watcher

Active watcher

If you’re constantly conflicted by the desire of being fit and resting at home after a long day, finding simple exercises to do in your room might be just what you’re looking for! While you’re sitting on the sofa and catching up on your favourite tv show, grab a fitness mat and add some squats or lunges during commercial breaks so you won’t even get distracted. And why not follow a certified personal trainer on YouTube? You'll find plenty of fitness tutorials focused on workout routines, nutritional advices and wellness tips to help you lose weight, enhance your performance and feel healthier. The best part? It’s a very inexpensive and fun way to stay healthy!

Find a workout buddy

Workout buddy

If you can't motivate yourself to exercising for half an hour of your day, invite one of your friends or classmates to join you! Whether you decide to go on a short run around campus or take a study break at the gym, you'll feel a lot more excited and enthusiastic overall. Does your uni offer fitness classes on a regular basis? It could be a great opportunity for you to make new friends and enhance your workout with exercises you haven't tried before!  

Take your lunch break outside

taking lunch break outside

It’s time to break out your day and leave the library for a bit! Allow yourself to step away from your laptop and enjoy your lunch break outside: a short walk will not only improve your focus but it will also make you feel more positive about your exams. Exercising doesn’t have to mean doing 20 push ups; it could be as simple as taking a short stroll around the nearest park or walking to a coffee shop. Wear some trainers and start exploring the area around you!

Get off the bus one stop earlier

Getting off the bus

You just got out of your lecture and realised you haven’t done any exercise today? You still have a chance to burn off some calories! Instead of scrolling through Instagram or reading the news, listen to some music and get off the bus one or two stops earlier. Even a short 10-15 minutes walk on your way back will make a difference at the end of the day and help you release all the stress you’ve accumulated.

Think about it: you’re always going to find excuses for not working out. If you think you can’t devote 30 minutes of your time to exercising, remember that you can always break down the time throughout your day, allowing you to meet deadlines, hang out with your friends, return a phone call and stick to your original plans. It will only be a matter of time until it becomes part of your routine!