I realize this goes against my previous blog stating that you should focus or leave working out, but for certain activities, you can do two things at once with ample proficiency. If you need to multitask to stay motivated, then by all means, go get ‘em.
Bear in mind that you will always get better results when you are focused. You will also probably perform better in these activities if you do them apart from your exercise, but for now, let’s just on work on creating good habits. We can pry activities apart later.
Do these five for now…
Exercise with your children.
I love this idea. Pinterest is replete with pins of people who’ve hacked workouts they perform with their children.
In some cases, the children are too young to be actively involved, so they’re doing moves like squatting with their baby. In other cases, the kids get to learn activities at the same time.
What a great lesson to start children on as early as possible.
Exercise with your pets.
Dogs make the easiest workout companions, but have you see the happy cat who goes swimming with the pack?
You may be able to do squats with your furry friend if he’s tiny, but why not start teaching him to run? Any activity you take your pet on will have so many reciprocal benefits you and your pet.
It’s well documented that dogs who get regular exercise leads happy, healthier [read: cheaper] lives.
Catch up on Podcasts.
With the speed of life, who has the time to listen to all of the awesome podcasts that are out there?
If you haven’t tried a little Tim Ferriss, Adam Carolla, Marc Maron, Joe Rogan, or Nerdist podcast, you’re missing out. Now you can catch up while you work.
Podcasts require such low-level of attention you can even lift with them playing in the background.
Learn a language.
What time do you have to learn a new language, but when you are taking a walk, jogging, or lifting?
There are podcasts, like the content Radio Lingua puts out, apps like Dueling or even the Rosetta Stone collection.
This is probably going to pull your attention a little more than podcasting, so no dodgeball or parkour, but you are on your own time.
You can relisten to lessons as many times as you need for them to sink in.
Improve your home.
In this case, home could mean the actual land you own or the earth you live on. They both count. You will probably be more motivated to put time into your personal investments, but maybe your property is already sculpted.
Your community may have volunteer programs for reforesting or cleaning up city land. Now you’re looking at crushing three virtuous activities with one move, exercise, earth care, and volunteering.
Consider that gardening burns 200-600 calories per hour, depending on the intensity of the work. That matches the averages for the gym.
By this time next year, you could have a new language mastered, a new yard, and the healthiest family on the block. Your kids will be squatting the family dog. Your dog will own the dog park.
You may even get invited to the Tim Ferriss show. It could happen.