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Friday, July 25, 2014

3 Tips To Make Lunch Hour Workouts A Success

While it may not be your first pick, working out over lunch is growing in popularity.  Many companies today, are including gyms on site or free/reduced memberships to near by fitness studios because they know regular exercise means improved health for their employees.  For you it can mean a chance to de-stress, get away from work and sneak in a little activity.  

For my husband, working out over his lunch hour has been a saving grace for him and really...our entire family.  To John (my hubby), it comes down to the lesser of three evils- get up early to workout and sacrifice sleep, go to the gym after work and sacrifice family time or workout over lunch.  

My powerlifting friend Laurel has some experience in this department, "I work out over my lunch break 4 to 5 times a week and have been for 5yrs now." Laurel told me.  "I had tried to work out after work for a year after my son was born but felt like I was missing out on even more time with him. I was willing to sacrifice the occasional lunch with friends and time away from my desk to sit in a lunchroom." Yes that means for people like Laurel and my husband they eat their lunch at their desk, while working. It may not be as fun as a lunch out with friends but it can be done.  

I realize there are schedules and situations that aren't conducive to working out on your lunch hour but before you poo poo this potential solution entirely check out the tips Laurel shared with me that helped her get into her lunch time workout groove.  

Put it on your work calendar.  Laurel encourages you to write it down just like you would a meeting.  If you have an electronic calendar that co-workers can view block out your time (if applicable) online as well to avoid potential conflicts.  

If you need extra time, ask your boss.  This is my favorite suggestion of Laurel's and one that has been used by my husband as well.  If you're finding you don't have enough time to squeeze in your workout ask your boss for a longer lunch.  In exchange offer to come in early or stay late.  If your boss scoffs at your request remind him/her (in a polite, persuasive manner) that studies have shown that people who exercise also increase their ability to make complex decisions, focus, think clearly and improve their mood.  Oh yea, then throw in a compliment.  Can't hurt right?  

Skip the shower.  Oh before you get all grossed out just listen… consider saving your lunch hour for your less sweaty workout sessions.  As hard and heavy as I lift weights I rarely sweat.  (Remember that sweat in NOT an indicator of how hard you're working.)  Laurel suggests just toweling off, touching up your make up and switching clothes.  Swap what would be your shower time for a few extra reps.  Besides, wipes like these, a little baby powder and a spritz of fragrance can go a long way.  

Weather you make working out over your lunch break part of your regular routine or use it as a back up plan these tips are sure to help make your workout a success.  


  1. Great tips! I workout very early in the morning 99% of the time but if an early morning meeting pops up, I have to work out during lunch. I don't mind it at all, but for me, I couldn't do it regularly mainly because meetings at that time pop up last minute all the time and I would be super annoyed if I had to constantly rearrange my schedule. Plus, I'm in meetings about 80% of my week, so flexibility during the day isn't as easy as it is for me to just get it done early in the morning! I agree with the wipes and would add in dry shampoo!

  2. Great tips but I have to stick with my morning before-work workouts. I have skipped a shower to get in a longer workout :) It's really not that gross ha!