May 24, 2024

Time-Saving Workout Tips by Sarah Johnson

Workout tips to save time:

If you’re like me, there are days that I don’t have a lot of time to spend in the gym – and I work in one!  On those crazy busy days, I need an efficient, yet effective routine that still pushes me toward my goals.

Here are my tips for making the most of your time before, during and after your workout:

Pack your gym bag the night before.  If you know you’ll be rushed to get out of the house in the morning, take a cue from when you were little and set out your gym clothes, music and sneakers the previous night.  Then you’ll be able to ensure that you have everything you need, without tearing the house apart to find your other shoe!  Sleep well knowing you can wake up prepared to start your day off on the right foot (pun intended!).

Create a playlist ahead of time.  Make a few designated play lists on your music device; a longer one for an endurance workout, a fast-paced one for your HIIT session and a calm, stress-reducing song list for a stretch routine.  If you have these, and other workout-specific set lists, you won’t waste time during your workout selecting or skipping songs that don’t motivate you.

Utilize the fitness staff.  We’re here to help you!  Your certified fitness professional can create a customized exercise plan just for you.  In fact, we can show you many ways to get the same results – you won’t get bored and you have options!  Only 20 minutes to exercise?  We can find a solution.  If you’re traveling, we can modify the workout so you can do it on the road, outdoors or in the hotel room.  You just have to ask.

Ask to work in. Just because someone’s using the machine you need, doesn’t mean you don’t get your workout in.  Most members are happy to share equipment – just politely ask to work in, and you can take it one step further and return the weights or settings to those the other member was using.  It’s a great way to maximize your time in the gym, and who knows – you may just make a new gym buddy!

Perform multi-tasking exercises.  Depending on your goals, there are many ways to combine movements and multi-task in the gym.  Get your heart rate up and increase your power with body weight exercises.  Calm your mind and improve your flexibility with a stretch routine.  Even if you have limited time, you can still get in a great workout.  Ask your fitness professional for goal-specific multi-taskers.

Nourish yourself.  What you eat and drink after exercising can affect how you feel the rest of the day, and can even influence how you perform during your next session.  Make sure to supply your body with the nutrients and energy you may have depleted during your workout, and replace any water loss with plenty of hydrating fluids.

Follow Sarah on Twitter @SarahJChicago

3 Tricks to a Time Efficient Workout by Gen Levrant

Not having enough time has become one of the biggest excuses, for not being able to fit in a workout. As a trainer, one of my jobs in recent years has been helping my clients manage their time and work/life balance better so they see it actually IS possible to fit in quick effective workouts! And we all know the endless positive side effects of these…Yet on the other hand, so many who DO find the time end up not actually making the most

Whether you have a personal trainer or not, what are the workouts you do on your own like? Are they as time efficient as they could be?

Here are 3 ways to guarantee a time efficient and effective workout:

1. Schedule your workouts. Look at your weekly routine to decide the most realistic time with the least chance of distraction or disturbance. Once you have determined this, treat your workouts as essential meetings with someone whom you cannot afford to cancel. If you value your health, mind and wellbeing then you will have no trouble viewing and scheduling them this way!

2. Set a timer. Say to yourself for this period of 20, 30 or 40 minutes, I am going to train with no distractions. Then set an alarm. If you are using your phone or iPad, put them in flight mode. If you have young children, perhaps try this during nap or school time.

3. Change the variables. Meaning your rest time, number of reps/sets, exercises or order – every workout you do should be slightly different. In doing so, you’ll trick your body into working harder as it will not have a chance to get used to what you are doing!

If you attend a gym or health club, think how many people you see dawdling, reading magazines, chatting to their friends…or perhaps not even setting foot in the gym and going straight to the coffee lounge!

Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to socialise but we all want results from our workouts, right? So if you have a tight schedule, try these tips to always have time for a workout! Happy training and have fun!

Gen Levrant is an Advanced Personal Trainer and weight-loss specialist. She runs a private functional training studio in Southampton UK helping people to get safe and permanent results. For further info on how Gen can help you email her via or visit Follow her on Twitter @PTGen, and find her on Facebook

Technology and Your Healthy Living by Coach Juli

Technology and You –
Out with stress, in with effective and efficient healthy living!

There are several ways that productivity has been, and can be, improved simply by taking advantage of the technology available to us today. Basically, any time that a task can be simplified, or the labor required to complete the task is reduced, stress will be decreased and productivity will increase.

Innovative technology is making it easier and faster for most people to take care of daily tasks – here are a few that are pretty simple for most to employ:

1.    Automatic or Online Bill Paying – Years ago when I started teaching people how to better manage their lives and save hundreds of dollars in late fees from not paying their bills, there were piles of paper to deal with, due dates to calculate, and then filing the bill once it was paid. No more! Now you can have most of your bills (think utilities!) deducted directly from your bank or credit card account and never worry about a late fee or worse, discontinued service. You can have your credit card statements emailed to you, and you can transfer funds, pay your bills, and manage your balances any time from the privacy of your computer or smartphone. Take a screen shot of the statement, or download it and store it in a receipt file on your computer. Paperless and Paid!

2.    Shopping & Coupon Clipping – newspapers, circulars, magazines…I think not. You can get deals emailed to you, sent to your phone, or simply Google® what you want and see if there is a coupon you can use when shopping online or at a brick & mortar. You can print your own coupons and only get the one you want for what you plan to purchase. Shopping online. Need I say more?

3.    Video Calling – I remember when there was talk of how someday we would be able to talk to people all over the world live! Wow! It seemed so miraculous. Well, it’s daily practice for most of us these days. Live far away from the kids? Jump on Skype, ooVoo, or Google Hangout and voila, instant quality time!

Contributed by Coach Juli, CPC: Efficiency & ADHD Coach. Efficiency Expert since 1984, and author of the eBook, Order! A Logical Approach to an Organized Way of Life, Contact at 805-964-2389 or

Finding Time for Fitness by Tera Busker

We are all busy and often have a hard time for finding time for fitness. Try these 7 tips to find time in your day to get in a great workout and make a positive step in the healthy direction.

Make it a PRIORITY! It’s easy to let excuses and every day activities get in the way of your fitness schedule. Too tired, too busy, too much to do – we have all been there. But if you want to make fitness a part of your life, you have to find time to make it a part of your life.  Schedule your workouts just like you would any other important appointment like going to the dentist or getting your hair done. Write it in your calendar and block out time in your day to get it done.

Be sneaky! Sneak fitness into your everyday chores and activities. Make small changes in your day like taking the stairs at work, walking to your co-workers office instead of emailing them,  squatting while you fold laundry or cleaning the house at a brisk pace.

PLAY! If you have kids or pets, be active with them! Kid and pet free? Join a sport league. Working out doesn’t have to mean spending time in a gym. Taking Fido for a hike, playing tag with the kids or joining a backyard game of flag football counts too! Having fun with your fitness makes it seem like a less daunting task.

Wake up early. Getting your workout completed first thing in the morning means you will be less likely to be distracted by other responsibilities later in the day.  Also, working out in the morning starts out your day with a sense of accomplishment and puts a little extra pep in your step.

Be prepared! If you know that you have limited time between getting up in the morning and heading out to the gym before you have to get to work, get in a routine of making sure your gym bag is packed every night before you go to bed.  That way in the morning you will not be rushed or have to skip your workout because you aren’t ready.

Get into a routine. If working out during your lunch hour works best for you, try to stick to that schedule. Life does have a way of throwing a wrench in your plan every now and again, but changing  up your routine too much leaves room for excuses to sneak in.

Instead of finding ways you CAN’T, try to find ways you CAN! Don’t “can’t” yourself to death. Anyone can find a million reasons why they can’t find time for fitness, but try to change up your thinking and try to find ways you can. Can’t workout for an hour every day? Then make the most of the time you can. Can’t afford a gym membership? Go for a jog or walk outside and do bodyweight strength exercises! Focus on the positive of what you can do and try to eliminate the negative of what you can’t.

Tera Busker is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and owner of Fitness To Go, an exclusive In Home & Private Studio Personal Training Service based out of Roberts, WI.


5 Steps to a Healthy Living Space! By Coach Juli Shulem

A healthy living space is part of wellness! An efficient household means less stress for everyone. Here are your five expert tips how to create a healthy, organized and functional living space:

1.    Make a plan!
Before organizing, know what it is or where it is that you will be focusing. To just begin willy-nilly often ends up leaving a bigger mess than which you started. Go through the entire house and list areas room-by-room. Be specific: kitchen counter, dining room table, under table, pantry, cutlery drawer, etc. Break the project into small, doable tasks that you can check off your list.

2.    Schedule specific time.
If you find you have been saying, “I need to organize this” and yet you never get around to it, chances are without scheduling it as an appointment with yourself, it won’t happen. Just like exercising: you need to plan and schedule this for it to become part of your regular day. If you have a very long list of organizing tasks, then you would be best off scheduling time daily to address it. I encourage clients to schedule 30-45 minutes each day.

3.    Start with “stuffed spaces.”
It is impossible to put things away where there is no space for anything to go. It only makes sense to begin by clearing space in existing cabinets and cupboards. There is usually so much packed into these and much of the things in the back are no longer useful. Start here and be ready to toss items that cause you to say, “Oh my, I still have this?”

4.    Get rid of unworn clothes.
It’s probably time to do a wardrobe assessment. Try items on and see what still fits, looks good, makes you feel good and is in style. Be realistic about how many different sizes of clothes you need to hold onto. Chances are if you have been a size for a few years, you won’t be changing drastically anytime soon, and if you do, you will probably want new clothes anyway. Let go of the ones you aren’t wearing.

5.    Schedule a donation pick-up within 48 hours of organizing.
So many times, a client gets things bagged or boxed only to have the stuff sit around in corners for days or weeks. Plan for your give-aways to be removed promptly. Afraid you will go back through your bags and boxes? Use opaque trash bags.

Contributed by Coach Juli, CPC: Efficiency & ADHD Coach. Efficiency Expert since 1984, and author of the eBook, Order! A Logical Approach to an Organized Way of Life, Contact at, 805-964-2389 or




3 Tips to Organized and Efficient! By Michele Stalker

If one of your resolutions is to “get organized” for the New Year, then it’s time to put things in order to improve efficiency. Time is one thing we don’t ever seem to have enough of, so by gaining control over your systems and your belongings, you can regain precious time often wasted on looking for lost items.

Here are 3 organizing tips for 2013 to get you on the right track:


1. Simplify.
Need I say more? People have too much “stuff!” This is a time of year when we have just gotten through the holiday season and received gifts, contributing to more things in our homes. Toss anything that’s broken, chipped or can’t be fixed. Donate items that no longer have a use or place in your life.

2. Envision your ideal space.
Sometimes people have a hard time deciding what to throw out. If you turn things around and look at it from a different perspective, try asking yourself, “What do I want in this space?” For example, your bedside table drawers could be so stuffed, you can hardly open them and end up piling things on top of the table. Clear everything off the surface and inside the drawers and then put back only what you want and need.

3. Take a few minutes to put things where they belong.
Think about when you first walk in the door to your home. Do you have a place for kids to put their backpacks, coats, boots, etc. as well as your own coats, bags and keys? If everyone in the household can take 5 minutes to put things away where they belong, then they will be there when you need them. It will be much easier to get back out the door when it’s time to leave instead of searching for missing hats, gloves and keys!

Remember, you don’t need to tackle everything at once, so start with one small project at a time.

Michele Stalker is the owner of the Professional Organizing Company Morganized Mom. She helps working parents manage the chaos of family life. With two young children of her own to guide her creative planning, she gives her clients customized solutions and proven efficient organizational systems for the home. For more organizing tips visit her at or on Facebook  at



Time-Saving Workout Tips by Tera Busker

What workout can I do at home to save time on busy days?

Here are 4 examples of effective workouts that will get you the results you want in a short amount of time.

Circuit Training
Circuit training is a series of strength or cardio exercises (or both) that are repeated two or three times with little or no rest between sets. Circuit training requires you to move quickly from exercise to exercise, which elevates your heart rate. If you add strength training exercises into your circuit, you can burn fat and tone your muscles in one workout. Circuit training is also a great boredom buster. Who can get bored when you are darting quickly from exercise to exercise? Choose 5-6 exercises, like lunges, mountain climbers, bench dips, burpees or jumping jacks, do each back to back for 30 seconds each. After you have completed all of the exercises, rest for 1-2 minutes. Repeat the same circuit 1-2 more times.

Tabata Training
Tabata training is a type of workout that only lasts four minutes but creates an “after burn effect.” This means that your body continues to burn calories well after the workout is over. A tabata workout consists of eight rounds working at high intensity for 20 seconds, and then 10 seconds of rest. Tabata training hardly takes any time at all, can easily be incorporated into your day, and offers huge benefits. Try it with jump squats, push-ups, or even sprints! An example workout would be do jumping jacks for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds, do pushups for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds. Repeat this sequence for a total of 4 minutes. 2 examples of workouts that work great with equipment that you may have at home (cardio machines/weights)

Your cardio workout doesn’t have to be long to be effective. Rather than doing steady-state cardio for 60 minutes, opt for 20 minutes HIIT. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a form of exercise that alternates between short bursts of high intensity exercise with longer periods of lower intensity. These high intensity bursts that melt the fat away – up to 50% more effectively than low-intensity exercise. It also speeds up your metabolism, which enables you to burn more calories throughout the day. Try this beginner HIIT workout. After you have warmed up at a low intensity for 5 minutes, start your first HIIT cycle. Work at an intense level for 30 seconds and follow with 90 seconds of moderate effort. Repeat the HIIT cycle for a total of 10 minutes, then cool down for 5 minutes.

Compound Exercises
Compound exercises are movements that combine an upper body and lower body exercise together. Movements that utilize both the upper and lower body at the same time create a better workout than exercises like, bicep curls, which only focus on one part of the body. How do you “build” a compound exercise? Take a lower body exercise like lunges, squats, bridges or planks and fuse it with an upper body exercise like bicep curls, shoulder presses, rows or tricep extensions. Some great examples are the squat and press, the rowing plank and the hip bridge with a tricep extension. Create a workout out of only compound exercise or add compound exercises into your Tabata or Circuit Training for a fast and effective workout.

Tera Busker is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and owner of Fitness To Go, an exclusive In Home & Private Studio Personal Training Service based out of Roberts, WI.

Finding Time for Yourself! Written by Suzi Smart

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Finding Time for Yourself! Written by Suzi Smart

Have you ever found yourself longing for just 15 minutes to enjoy a HOT cup of coffee or an hour to be able to have an uninterrupted phone conversation with an old friend? Would you like to devote evening to a neglected hobby or spend the weekend away with your husband? It’s time to find the time.

Every mom I know is busy. Whether it’s fifteen minutes or an entire weekend, finding time for yourself gives you time to recharge.

Find 15 minutes - Run fewer errands. Yes, the milk at the grocery store is slightly cheaper than at the corner store you pass on your way home but if that’s all you need, save yourself the time. Have a hot cup of coffee in the time you saved.

Find an hour - Go for a workout. Many fitness centres offer childcare for a great rate. After a great workout (alone and undisturbed), you’ll be ready to tackle the next chore on the list. Or once a week, instead of tuning out in front of the television for an hour after you put your child(ren) in bed, devote that time to something you love to do.

Find an evening - Let a trusted friend or family member take care of the children for one evening. If they end up having cereal for dinner, go with it. One night isn’t going to hurt. Go to a movie, an exhibit or join a club.

Find a day (or part of a day) - Every other week or once in a while, trade the time with another mother. I’m sure there’s someone in your circle who would jump at the chance to have a day to themselves even if it means having an extra child the alternate week. Just imagine what you could do (or not do) with the time.

Find a weekend - It’s amazing what the power of asking will bring you. Ask a trusted friend or relative to care for your child(ren) for the weekend and escape with your husband. Ask your husband and escape for a girls weekend or a workshop that you’d like to attend.

While on the surface, taking time for yourself may seem selfish, in the end you’ll have more energy to devote to those you love. Finding the balance that works for you and your family is the key.

This article is written by Suzi Smart. Suzi is a stay-at-home mom raising a spirited three-year old boy, a wife, an outdoor enthusiast, graphic designer, writer and photographer. She writes The Big Picture – Inspiring families to find happiness outdoors and can be reached at or @BigPictureYYC on Twitter.

Addicted to Busy? By Juli Shulem

Summer is often thought of in terms of “lazy days of summer” yet some jam-pack their every last fun desire into a day without a thought. While most adults are at work, student age kids want to indulge in otherwise less stressful activities: play.

One of the challenges to overcome is to undo some of the busy-ness of the school day months and translate that into a more relaxed version of what would be considered an actual break. Keeping busy is appropriate at certain times, but being addicted to being busy is not healthy. So, that begs the question: How to become less addicted to always being busy?

Does being less busy make you feel guilty? For some adults this is a very real situation. Children experience less of this as they are still able to find value in ‘play.’ It’s important for a parent to not put their own agenda and feelings of wanting to be super busy onto their child. That said, it is also important not to sit around and waste an entire day doing nothing but watch TV.

So, how do we “undo” busy?

It all comes down to priorities. Determining what is important, meaningful and necessary in our lives.

Ask yourself ‘why’ you are engaging in a particular activity. Granted there is much more that we need to do besides the income producing work we do, but is all of it really necessary?

Acknowledge that we can’t do it all at once. To have something scheduled every day or night of the week without ‘down time’ to recharge will come back to bite you. When do you rest? When do you recharge?

Look at your life, assess your schedule and determine what doesn’t need to be part of your routine ‘right now.’ Take it out and let there be simply ‘nothing’ in its place. Everyone needs to rest and have unstructured time. Be sure to take time to do nothing.

Contributed by Juli Shulem (, Professional Coach focused on helping people get more organized., Organizing Expert since 1984, and author of the eBook, Order! A Logical Approach to an Organized Way of Life,


The Downside of Organization by Juli Shulem

The Downside of Organization.

It may sound ridiculous, but there can be a downside of being too organized. Here is a list of potential hazards you should be aware of:

You will find yourself with unexplained stress-free time in the course of a day because you will be able to find what you are seeking in a matter of minutes.

You will be able to dress and get ready for your day faster because you can see all the items in your closet. Nothing will be shoved in the back of a drawer or laying on the floor of your closet or bedroom.

You will save money not buying something for the second or third time because you couldn’t find the first one you owned due to the clutter it was stuck under.
When cleaning you will get that chore done in record time because you aren’t forced to move piles and piles of items to get to the surfaces.

You will not miss out on opportunities because you will have everything you are interested in doing scheduled in your calendar – where you can find it.

You will not need to schedule time to purge closets and rooms or “get organized” because once you get to that place and learn to keep it that way – one doesn’t need to schedule time getting there. You have arrived.

You will not have the physical or mental complications associated with stress as you will no longer experience stress or overwhelm due to disorder.

And lastly, you will have free time. Most haven’t experienced that concept without sitting on the beach in the Bahamas, so allow me to remind you what free time includes. This is a block of unscheduled, unoccupied, unencumbered, ‘not busy’ stretch of existence. In other words – you get to simply exist and fill the space of defined time, or undefined if you are so lucky, where you can do what you wish, or simply do nothing at all. Words often associated with this are: Nirvana, bliss and pure joy.

So, if you’re unable to recall the last time a friend asked what you were up to today and you responded relaxing,  it’s time. Make today the start of a new lifestyle- make today the day you get organized once and for all! Decrease stress, decrease drama, decrease overwhelm and increase peace, breathing easier…and FREE TIME!

Contributed by Juli Shulem (, Efficiency Coach., Efficiency Expert since 1984, and author of the eBook, Order! A Logical Approach to an Organized Way of Life,