Too Busy to Exercise

Greetings, MFP community!

I need your help. I feel like I have no time to exercise.

I currently work full-time, Monday through Friday, from 8 AM until 4:30 PM. I'm also in school full-time getting my MBA. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, I have class from 6 PM until 9:30 PM. Between that, I own a home with my partner and have to take care of the house and our pets. And outside of class hours, whenever possible, I meet with classmates to work on group work.

By the time I get some downtime, I'm exhausted. If I'm not working, in class, meeting with classmates, or taking care of the house, I'm sleeping because I'm so tired. And unfortunately, I feel like I have no time to exercise.

Any advice, MFP? How can I get time to exercise?


  • Ariberri9
    Ariberri9 Posts: 206 Member
    You can always make time for what is important to you. I used to wake up at 5am to exercise. Now I wake up at 4am cuz I can't sleep, but that's a different story. If you don't have time, you have to sacrifice something else.

    I feel that the things I can sacrifice are sleep, work, or class. And I feel like I can't sacrifice any of those, especially sleep (I need sleep to effectively manage my health issues).
  • kbmnurse
    kbmnurse Posts: 2,484 Member
    Walk your pets. Get up an hour early to get-it-done.
  • Ironandwine69
    Ironandwine69 Posts: 2,432 Member
    Okay..I'm not judging, I got my MBA 5 years ago, I know it's a lot of work. But add to that mix a couple of kids and then you understand what busy is. I just don't believe that you can't find 30 mins 3 times a week. Ask your partner to help more around the house. Don't watch TV. Don't get your hair done before work. Find a gym near work and do a 20min workout during lunch. Separate the work with your classmates and exchange via email, no need to meet.
  • Heather4448
    Heather4448 Posts: 908 Member
    Study on the treadmill. 2 birds, 1 stone.
    Also - Make a list of daily and weekly household chores. Split them fairly. This will be where you gain more free time.
  • kaizaku
    kaizaku Posts: 1,039 Member
    It comes down to how bad you want to exercise. Sure your busy, I'm also busy and start work 6am. Nevertheless I workout despite being tired, have lack of sleep. You can train Tuesday and Thursday straight after work for 40mins at least. Also the weekend. You only need an hour max. It's possible to take care of your home too if you manage your time.
  • Catnightingale88
    Catnightingale88 Posts: 5 Member
    Like somebody else has said, it comes down to how much you want it. Your partner should be more supportive and help more with housework and looking after the pets... could you not do 30 mins high intense training on Tuesday, Thursday and saturdays?
  • getupforchange
    getupforchange Posts: 86 Member
    Don't you have a lunch break at work? Or go before work. If you're worried about losing an hour of sleep go to bed an hour earlier.
  • qpmomma1
    qpmomma1 Posts: 220 Member
    Can you exercise on your lunch break at work?
    Do you have spare time for TV and other "down time" activities? You could use that time to exercise.

    And really, it's only 30 minutes. I know that seems like a lot, but I found I was using those 30 minutes for other things. Once I realized it wasn't that much it was easier to workout for 30 minutes.
  • A_Rene86
    A_Rene86 Posts: 141 Member
    I know it's hard, but it is doable. I'm in a similar position: I work 50+ hours a week, am also in school, have a dog, and since my bf is out of state for work (has been for a year) there isn't anyone to help with the day to day household tasks. I still make it to crossfit 5 times a week. Yes it often means sacrificing some down time, but it's so worth it.
  • jayv85
    jayv85 Posts: 142 Member
    Wake up early and get it done.

    I'm on the same scale almost. I'm up at 4am for work, 90 minute drive, work until 5pm and home by 6:30pm. That's 4 days a week. I get right on the treadmill as soon as I get home.

    Add in drill weekends, any time I go away for training (which has been a lot this year), a lot of teleconferences some weeks, kids, and working on my masters degree (though I'm half-time online because the school by me doesn't do night classes, and I'm going to need a masters to get promoted).

    You don't have to do a lot. I usually get at least 3-4 30 minute runs in a week, and I do a circuit for abs and arms when I don't run that takes maybe 10 minutes.
  • Penthesilea514
    Penthesilea514 Posts: 1,189 Member
    I also want to say- you might even find that adding 30 mins x 3 a week can actually help you feel more energized as well and not as exhausted or stressed. Do some bodyweight exercises (squats, lunges, dips, etc) while you study or hop on an elliptical with some notes.

    Also- is your goal just to exercise more? Or are you trying to lose weight? Because caloric deficit will be your ticket to weight loss and can be done without exercising, while exercise is more for improved health/energy. So your goals are important to consider as well.
  • jayv85
    jayv85 Posts: 142 Member
    Looking at your schedule. Fit in an hour walk after work Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday. If you're on a safe track (or the treadmill) use the time to read for school as well (multitasking lol). You don't have to walk fast.

    The cockpot has been my friend in getting dinner cooked as well. Which will help all those days.
  • AnnaBanana5010
    AnnaBanana5010 Posts: 55 Member
    Look into Pinterest for stationary bike Hiit Workouts. A stationary bike used can cost $99.00. Good luck and try HIIT workouts. Jump rope burns 100 calories in ten minutes. You can do this! Also monitor your diet. Try food in a plain form with no dressings. Avoid sugar. Your time is limited so try high fat burning workouts. Whatever five minutes you have . Even if you do five minutes a day on a stationary bike while lifting weights and then jump rope for ten minutes.. that will be 15 minutes and a great workout!!
  • sllm1
    sllm1 Posts: 2,114 Member
    Tuesday, Thursday, and the weekend. Put it on your calendar and do it. Work around it with your group work. If you value it, you will make it happen.

    Don't worry about being tired. We're all tired. Most days, exercise makes me feel better. You just have to make it your routine and make it a priority.
  • pinuplove
    pinuplove Posts: 12,874 Member
    Get up early and make it happen. Exercise will help, in the long run, with your energy levels. Go to bed a little earlier on those nights you don't have class to help make up for it if you need to.
  • Jthanmyfitnesspal
    Jthanmyfitnesspal Posts: 3,521 Member
    Ariberri9 wrote: »
    I need your help. I feel like I have no time to exercise.

    If you are moving for most of the day, including just standing, and you are physically tired at the end, then I'm going to give you the radical notion that maybe you don't need to work out. Maybe you just need a fitbit to count your steps. If you are over 5000, you are OK and if you are at 10000, then you are golden.

    Let me add that it has been shown that even very short workouts (less than 10 minutes) can significantly improve your fitness level:

    In any case, you can diet even when you are very busy. Just plan your meals in advance and stick to them. Personally, I lose more weight when busy than not, since I'm distracted. Best wishes on your many activities!
  • MoiAussi93
    MoiAussi93 Posts: 1,948 Member
    Work out during lunch. Most people I know have done this at some point.

    I have friends who used to work 80-100 hours a week (in finance). Every week. For months at a time. Even they found time to go down to the fitness center and run several times a week. They were some of the most fit people in my social circle.

    Go walk your dog...or take him for a run. If you're not walking him, I'm not sure why taking care of your pets would take so much of your time that it wouldn't allow you to exercise.

    The point is, you prioritize what is important to you. If you want to exercise, you WILL find the time. If you don't, you will find excuses.