Everyday workouts: exercise without exercising

Supplementing my daily morning stretches and kung fu practice, I make sure that I use my body effectively when moving it to do normal activities.

These normal everyday movements include:

  • Getting up from sitting
  • Moving from standing to sitting
  • Sitting
  • Standing up
  • Standing while brushing teeth
  • Walking
  • Walking the dog
  • Opening/closing doors
  • Opening the refrigerator
  • Doing the dishes
  • Picking something up
  • Kneeling down to get something
  • Grabbing a plate from the cupboard
  • Emptying the dishwasher
  • Opening a sliding door
  • Cleaning the pool
  • Pan frying
  • Carrying a pot of water/pasta
  • Carrying groceries from the car
  • Carrying plates to/from the dinner table
  • Getting up from bed
  • Making coffee
  • Picking up a glass of water
  • Washing hands
  • Taking out the trash

For each of these movements, I stay mindful of:

  • Keeping a good posture
  • Engaging my core
  • Relaxing my shoulders and keeping them back
  • Keeping center of gravity low
  • Balance

No equipment needed

You don’t need to buy any fancy weights or equipment. You don’t need fancy workout shorts, shoes, or gear. No barbells, kettle bells, or dumbbells. All you need is your body.

No need to make extra time in your day

You don’t need to block out an hour each day plus getting to and from your gym. No need for that early morning rise to get out the door to make sure you’re there before the equipment is all used up. No need to rush a quick shower in before heading to work. You just do your exercise as you do your normal everyday activities.

It costs (monetarily) nothing

It costs you some mental energy to ensure you’re being mindful of your body. This isn’t necessarily free. Your attention has value. However, as you practice each of these movements over time, you’ll need to spend less time to focus on doing them.