Even If You’re Not A Workout Person, Doing These 5 Things Every Day Counts As Exercise

I don't know if you can relate, but after a long day, I'd much rather keep my date with my Netflix account than my date with my workout routine. Something about the formality of sticking to a strict, intense gym routine can be really intimidating, so what works best for my body is finding a variety of interesting ways to incorporate physical activity into my day. If you know where I'm coming from, luckily there are so many everyday things that count as exercise, many of which you probably already do on a regular basis. But even if you don't, it's super easy to get started ASAP.

Now, if you've read any kind of health news in the last 20 years or so, you probably already know that study after study has found that staying active is one of the best things you can do to take care of yourself. From lowering your risk of heart disease to boosting your mental health, it's clear that regular physical activity does wonders for your well-being. So the question really isn't why should you try to work out more often; it's more about how you can stay active when you already barely have time to feed yourself and return your mom's texts.

For starters, according to Ariel Osharenko, a physical therapist, strength and conditioning coach, and personal trainer, you don't have to work out for a long time, nor do you have to get active every single day. A few minutes here and there can easily accumulate, and before you know it, you'll actually break a sweat, without hating a single minute of it. Here are a few ways to stay active on the daily.

Have A Dance Party

Feeling yourself to the latest Rihanna song isn't just super fun, but a great form of exercise, too. "If you enjoy dance, then go out dancing or take a dance class," Lyuda Bouzinova, an ACE-certified fitness nutrition specialist, personal trainer, and co-founder of Mission Lean, tells Elite Daily over email, adding that there's no need to force yourself to do workouts that you downright hate, especially when it's so easy to find something that you already really enjoy.

Get Freaky With A Partner

Getting your heart rate up doesn't have to mean trading pleasure for pain (unless, of course, that's your thing, though that's another article for another day). So if you're not that into hitting the gym, you can trade a squat routine for a steamy sex session, because a 2013 study published in the journal PLOS One showed that sex really can count as exercise. The study looked at 21 young adult couples and compared the amount of energy they used during a 30-minute, moderate-intensity treadmill session, to the energy they used during sexual activity. According to the research, the results "suggest that sexual activity may potentially be considered, at times, as a significant exercise." Hey, it beats being in a stinky gym, right?

Get Off A Stop Early On The Subway

Dempsey Marks, a fitness expert for Gold’s Gym, tells Elite Daily over email that one easy way to sneak exercise into your daily routine is to force yourself to walk a little longer than usual. If you usually take public transportation, get off the bus or train a little earlier than you have to, and get to know another neighborhood.

If you usually drive to work or school, Marks recommends switching up your parking strategy. "Whether you’re at work, the grocery store, a lunch meeting, or the gym," she says, "don’t look for the so-called 'perfect' parking spot. Park a fair distance away from where you’re meant to go." And if it's pouring down rain? Then you'll be forced to run to your destination, boosting your heart rate even more.

Hit Up Trader Joe's

Good news, my fellow grocery store shopaholics: Your insistence on carrying all of your bags in only one trip could be seriously boosting your health. Even the simple acts of buying, transporting, and putting away your groceries are all getting your heart going: "While some people go to the gym and carry nylon and velcro bags, carrying groceries from the car counts as exercise," personal trainer and world champion powerlifter Robert Herbst tells Elite Daily in an email. I'm assuming this means I should add as many containers of Trader Joe's dark chocolate peanut butter cups to my cart as possible, right?

Take A Break From UberEats

While it's ridiculously easy to summon the most delicious lunch you can imagine with just a few swipes on an app, one easy way to stay fit without actually working out is to get up from your chair and actually retrieve your food when it's time to eat. "Instead of calling a food delivery service for lunch, go outside to pick it up," Reggie Chambers, a celebrity private training and fitness specialist, tells Elite Daily. Say goodbye to your sad desk lunch and get some sunshine, girl.

Mind you, you don't even have to walk that far: One study, published in the American Journal of Health Promotion, found that every minute of physical activity — even if it's just one literal minute — has a positive impact on your health. That's pretty doable, right?