Man up, manage your exercise

You know you need to exercise, we all do. But let’s be honest, between work, home life, travel and friends, there is not much time to fit it in.  

There are people in the world who love exercise and make it a top priority and there are others who just simply don’t. It is not that they can’t (we can all find time), it is just that it isn’t a top priority.  

And while there is nothing wrong with that, it doesn’t mean you can get away without exercising. Staying fit and healthy is so important to a good quality of life. Think of it as just one of those things you have to manage, not unlike your job, and get on with it. 

You don’t have to be a marathon runner or extreme athlete who trains every day to improve your fitness. The biggest health benefits seen with increased exercise are derived from going from a sedentary lifestyle to a moderately active one.  

Increasing your activity level just a bit will help you become healthier and feel better. It helps give you energy, keep your weight in check and stay mobile and feeling prepared for that weekend golf, football or tennis game. 

Finding time outside the odd weekend sport to do other forms of exercise can be difficult for busy professionals. Most men and women would say they either have no time or are simply too tired to get moving. For someone who is “too busy”, I would say that they would ideally need to get in the right kind of exercise in the least amount of time. It’s all about time management. As you get moving your energy level will improve and you won’t feel so tired. 

Just like anything you do, you want to do it correctly. Exercise is no different. You need to find something that includes some cardiovascular work, resistance training to build muscle, core work and, hopefully, some flexibility training in there somewhere.  

If you find something that includes these aspects of fitness and you do it even twice a week, you’ll be ahead of the game.  

Throw in a tennis game and a brisk walk or jog and you are now up to four exercise sessions a week. You may not get a ripping six-pack or bulging biceps from this type of programme but you will feel better, be healthier and who knows where that will lead. 

There are a few ways to accomplish this. Working with a personal training will give you motivation, accountability and structure. You know you have your sessions, you know what you are doing in them is correct and will be helpful and not harmful.  

Your programme can even be geared to help get you fit and ready for that weekend golf or tennis match, an upcoming ski trip or even to help strengthen up your knees or back after an injury or surgery. 

Group exercise classes are also a great option as they are normally structured and at a specific time each week. You just want to make sure you choose something that covers all the aspects of fitness you need to work and that it is appropriate for your fitness level.  

The last thing you need to do is start off with something so extreme that you run the risk of injury – nobody wants that. Start slow and as your fitness level improves you can adjust your routine accordingly. It is all about doing quality exercise to improve your fitness and make your body healthier, no matter what level you start out at.  

So start managing your fitness routine like you do your work life and do it now – there is no time like the present! 


Deanna Smith is a certified exercise physiologist and Pilates instructor at ENERGY Essential Fitness in Cricket Square. She can be reached at [email protected] 

The biggest health benefits seen with increased exercise are derived from going from a sedentary lifestyle to a moderately active one.  


Fitting in a run and some other form of exercise into your daily routine is good for your health. – PHOTO: FILE

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