Exercise is important for everyone, but even more so for freelancers. When working from home, it can be tempting to do your job from the couch or bed. Some days, you may not have any reason to get moving. When your to-do list is already full, it can be hard to find the time to add one more thing – even if it is beneficial to your wellbeing. However, a regular exercise routine is something that you should make a priority.
I spent the first three months of my full-time virtual assistant job working from a recliner in my living room. When I tracked my movement with a FitBit, I found that I got less than 1000 steps per day. Some days I got less than 500. I was shocked! I had no idea that I was so sedentary and didn’t make the connection between my lack of movement and feeling sluggish and tired most days. I realized that in order to feel my best, I needed to commit to a regular exercise routine.
Why freelancers should exercise every day
- Exercise improves focus and concentration
Exercise is great for your body and your mind. It keeps you healthy and strong.The benefits of exercise cannot be understated. It combats obesity and other illnesses, boosts serotonin the brain which can lead to more creativity, and increases energy. After exercising, you will feel focused and ready to get back to work. If you’re having a hard time completing a task, even taking a 10 minute walk can help.
- Exercise relieves boredom and cabin fever
Exercising helps break up the monotony of working from home. Let’s be real, it can get very boring. You are in the same place all day, every day. Exercise can get you out of the house or at least get you out of the mindset of feeling stuck and frustrated. A 30 minute session will leave you feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the rest of your day.
- Exercise keeps you healthy and working
When you’re a freelancer, you may be the only person who can get your work done. Taking a sick day is often difficult or impossible depending on how much you have on your plate. Keeping a regular exercise routine will boost your immune system and lower the chances of getting sick.
How to get your daily exercise in
The Department of Health and Human Services recommends 30 minutes of exercise every day.
This includes time spent doing cardio exercises like jogging, dancing, or swimming and time spent doing strength training like weightlifting or push-ups.
Getting your daily dose of exercise can be as simple as a 30 minute walk around your neighborhood followed by a short body weight routine. The fresh air will invigorate you and may even help you think of new business ideas! Getting your body moving often helps kick your brain into gear.
If you want more exercise options, you can join a gym or set one up in your home. I have a Total Gym and elliptical machine in the basement that I use when my kids are sleeping.
Exercise options for freelancing mamas
It can be difficult to find time to exercise when you’re a freelancing mama especially if you don’t have childcare . You may have to get more creative with your exercise or work out when your kids are asleep.
One way to make sure you can exercise regularly is to join the YMCA. The Y has free childcare up to two hours per day for members. I belong to the Y and think it’s perfect for the freelancing lifestyle. If I chose a gym without childcare I’d be stuck going before 5:30 am or after 5:30 pm to work around my husband’s schedule.
Another great option is workout DVDs. There are tons of exercise programs available. Many of these will give you a great workout from the comfort of your living room. I have a few Beachbody DVDs and a series of Zumba DVDs. I can pop one of these into my DVD player at any time and do a quick workout. My previous cable provider also had free exercise videos in their On Demand selection. I used those videos when I wanted a quick workout.
When all else fails, you can do the seven minute workout every day. This workout was designed to get the most bang for your buck when you have very little time for exercise.
Exercise is important for staying healthy and maintaining a positive attitude while working from home. If you don’t have a regular exercise routine in place, start by adding a few minutes of activity each day. Remember, any exercise is better than none!