An exercise routine can be an important part of any cholesterol-lowering program. However, you must have time dedicated to exercising everyday in order to see some results. For some of you with not a lot of time to spare, fitting exercise into your schedule may seem like an impossible feat. However, with a little help, you can get your daily exercise and complete all of your other tasks, too.
These helpful tips will help you fit exercise into your schedule –- no matter how busy your day may be. While this might be a little hard to do at first, think about the end results: a lower cholesterol, a stronger body, and a healthier you.
- Set time aside in your busy schedule for exercise, just like you would set time aside for a doctor’s appointment or a meeting.
- If it has been awhile since you have exercised, don’t try to start all at once. Instead, slowly build yourself up to five times or so a week. Beginning an exercise regimen too suddenly will cause you to burn out and could actually hurt you. Talk to your healthcare provider about an exercise program that is right for you -- especially if you have any other health conditions.
- Work out your exercise plan to where you are able to do a variety of exercise activities during the week. Doing only one activity every time may cause you to become bored and quit exercising.
- Daily chores count. Various household duties, such as vacuuming, mowing the lawn, raking leaves, gardening and washing your car are good forms of exercise because they get you moving and raise your heart rate.
- Walk as often as possible, even if it means parking further away from your destination or not relying on automotive transportation altogether when going to the store or to work. Walking, especially when it is done at a high pace, can help lower your cholesterol, too.
- Skip the elevators and escalators and take the stairs. This form of exercise not only helps lower your cholesterol and make your heart stronger, it can also help build leg muscles.
- If time itself is a factor, you can divide the time you exercise into 10- or 15-minute intervals. Studies have shown that this is just as effective as exercising for a solid 30-minute block of time.
And lastly, have fun! Although exercise can help lower cholesterol and strengthen your heart, it also has other healthy benefits, such as weight loss, strengthening your body, and improving your emotional health.
Slentz CA, Houmard JA, Johnson JL et al. Inactivity, exercise training and detraining, and plasma lipoproteins. STRRIDE: a randomized, controlled study of exercise intensity and amount. J Appl Physiol. 2007 Aug;103(2):417-8.
Tucker LA, Friedman GM. Walking and serum cholesterol in adults. Am J Public Health. 1990 September; 80(9): 1111–1113.