Missing a day or two at the gym will not affect your body fat. In fact, giving your body a couple days to rest and rebuild is important to avoid overuse injury. But if your gym visits are irregular, finding ways to burn fat will help maintain body fat. It is possible to gain the benefits of exercise without the use of equipment or a lot of time. Monitoring what you eat helps as well.
Build muscle 10 minutes a day using your own body weight for resistance. The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn throughout the day. Do two sets of 12 to 15 squats, side lunges, pushups and bicycle crunches to strengthen and build muscles in the major muscle groups.
Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator. Using the stairs burns calories and builds muscles in the glutes and legs. Research indicates that stair climbing helps control weight, improves bone density in women and increases good HDL cholesterol, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada.
Walk more by parking 10 minutes from your destination. Take a 10-minute walk during your lunch break and after dinner.
Do jumping jacks or other cardiovascular activity during commercials while watching TV. A 2012 study in "Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise" found that television viewers who marched in placed during commercials for a one-hour show burned 148 calories and had an exercise time of about 25 minutes. You can increase calories burned by performing higher intensity exercises such as jumping jacks, simulating jumping rope or doing calisthenics.
Monitor your calories. Weight gain occurs when you eat more than you burn. If you'll be missing gym, reduce your calories by the amount you would have burned. For example, a high-impact aerobics class burns 210 to 311 calories every 30 minutes. To make up for that loss, cut 210 to 311 calories, or more if the class is longer. Just be careful not to eat fewer than 1,200 calories a day if you're a woman and 1,800 if you're a man.
- Take advantage of opportunities to be active such as playing outside with the kids or riding your bike instead of driving.