How to work out on your commuteJuly 24, 2017
We’ve teamed up with Tom Tom to give you some tips for a work out you can actually do on the way to the office!
There aren’t enough hours in the day, right? You want to be more active, move more and feel better, but when life’s this busy, how is that even possible? Well, the answer could just lie in the most dreaded part of your day: the commute to and from work. Here are some ideas to get you started:
Workout on your commute: On public transport
1. Calf Raises
Whenever you’re standing on a platform or a bus stop, keep your feet together and slowly lift your heels off the floor. Hold the position for ten seconds, then lower yourself back down. Do as many sets as you can.
The Benefit: If you aim for 50-100 calf raises per day (which is easier than it sounds) you’ll soon notice a boost in your calf strength and definition.
2. Stair run
Take the stairs whenever you can on your commute. Don’t trudge up every step; get running or take two steps at a time!
The Benefit: Extra steps means extra calories burned. On average, walking 10,000 steps a day will burn around 500 calories, which should add up to the equivalent of 0.45kg in weight per week.
3. The ‘Commuter Crunch’
The commuter crunch is a toning workout you can do whenever you’re lucky enough to bag a seat. It’s as close to a proper floor crunch you can do while seated, and should leave you feeling the burn if done right. Plant your feet, contract your abs and roll your spine forwards so that your chest moves towards your lap. Hold it for ten seconds, then relax and repeat.
The Benefit: Each crunch will go a little way towards strengthening your core, which will help add definition to your abs.
Can’t get a seat? No problem. Simply standing on a train or bus journey has its share of health benefits. For an added core-challenge, place your feet slightly wider apart and try to go between stops without holding onto the handrails.
The Benefit: Keeping yourself balanced on a moving bus or train involves hundreds of micro-adjustments per minute, improving your core strength.
Workout on your commute: In the car*
1. Wheel Squeeze
When you’re stopped at lights or in a jam, put your hands at ten and two and spend ten seconds trying to crush the wheel into a ball. Rest and repeat.
The Benefit: This is an ‘overcoming isometric’ strength exercise (in which the angle of your joints and muscles doesn’t change throughout) – great for building arm muscles.
2. Wheel Push
Similarly, you can easily do mini push-ups while sitting in traffic by keeping your hands at ten and two, tensing your arm muscles and pulling yourself towards the steering wheel. Hold yourself near the steering column for a few seconds, then ease back into your seat.
The Benefit: One part core workout, one part bodyweight exercise, the wheel push should work your core and arm strength alike.
Toning your core while sitting is easier than you think. Sit really upright, face forwards, clench your abs and twist slowly (and we mean slowly) from side to side, holding at each side for a few seconds per rep.
The Benefit: You probably won’t be sporting a six-pack by the end of your journey, but repeated core twists will definitely help define your core muscles over time.
4. Park further from work
If you’re looking to up your step count every day, there’s no simpler solution than parking as far away from work as you can and hot footing it from there.
The Benefit: As with taking the stairs, more steps means more calories burned each day!
*Don’t get too keen! Only exercise in the car when stopped at traffic lights or in traffic.