Lunchtime Workouts: How to Make the Most of Just an Hour

total-body-workoutI rarely put in a lunchtime workout, mainly because I work straight through lunch, but they certainly come in handy when you’ve got evening plans – which I do 🙂 More to come on that later.

There are a bajillion excuses not to utilize your lunch hour for a workout – “I’ll get too hot,” “I won’t have time to get ready again,” “It’s not long enough,” “I’ll be too hungry,” blah, blah, blah. BUT, if you are lucky enough to have a gym within close proximity to where you work – OR if you have a gym in your office (lucky girl right here) – then those excuses need to fly right out the window!

Really, all you need for a lunchtime workout is a good 30 minutes. And on a typical lunch hour, that means you’ve got another 30 for getting undressed, showered, dressed, and allowing for travel time. Totally doable!

Here are some great ideas to utilize your time, and nip those excuses in the bud!:

* Eat a Snack! To beat the lunchtime hunger pangs, make sure to eat a small snack to keep your hunger at bay until you get back to your desk for lunch. Today, I had half of this Luna Peanut Butter Cookie Bar.

Luna Peanut Butter Cookie Bar.

* Pack an Office Beauty Bag. Instead of lugging the hair dryer, straightener, deodorant, shower shoes, make-up, toiletries to and from the office. Set yourself up with a little kit that you keep in the office. Hotel samples work great for these bags, as do the travel size items you can find at your local pharmacy. Now you will never again use the “I forgot my deodorant” excuse. How do I know you’ll use that excuse? Because I have myself, and trust me, I’ve used them all!
* Go Take a Stroll. So you don’t have a gym near you. Who cares? Bring your sneaks, and use the lunch our to hot foot it around town. You’ll see some sites, capitalize on the weather, possibly get a little glow from the sun, and burn some calories that you wouldn’t have gotten if you’d just stayed at your desk.
* Interval Train. Instead of just doing 30 plain old boring minutes on the elliptical, maximize your time in the gym by interval training. This month’s Shape had an excellent interval schedule.
* Bring a Sack Lunch. To cut down on time by having to ALSO run out to grab a sandwich, bring lunch in from home and have it ready to eat at your desk when you get back from the gym. And please, we’re recessionistas – you should be doing this ANYWAY! I came back to this lovely meal.

healthy lunch

Spinach Salad with Cantaloupe Melon, Corn, Avocado and Gorgonzola Cheese

Spinach Salad-Cantaloupe Melon, Corn, Avocado and Gorgonzola Cheese



Other Half of Luna Cookie

Luna Cookie

So, if you really want to go to that happy hour tonight, and didn’t work out this morning, remember there’s always a way to squeeze it in at lunch. You’ll enjoy that glass of wine a lot more 🙂

And what am I doing tonight you ask? Geoff is taking me out for my belated birthday dinner since we were at the wedding on my actual day. I chose Rock Creek in Bethesda. All of the nutritionals are listed on their menu and nothing is more than 500 calories per serving. Expect a full review post-dinner!

When is your FAVORITE time to workout?