Play Tip No. 4: add play to something you already do

Janet Omstead - add play to something you already do

Play Tip No. 4: add play to something you already do

By Published On: November 5th, 2021

How to find the time for PLAY (exercise) when you think you can’t!

Tip No. 4: Add play to something you already do.

Globally, approximately 3.2 million deaths each year are attributable to insufficient physical activity. I don’t believe this has to be the case.

How can you “play” rather than feel like you need to “work out” and fight this trend?

Have you ever heard of habit stacking?

Adding some play (exercise) at the end of a habit you already do is called “habit stacking.” Author and habit expert James Clear writes extensively about this concept in his book “Atomic Habits.” If you haven’t read it yet, I highly recommend you do!

Here’s an example. After you unload the dishwasher (current habit), do ten squats or go for a 10-minute walk (stacking habit).

You are already incorporating many habits during your day. The secret to creating a successful habit stack is selecting the right cue to kick things off.

Two things to consider are (a) where you choose to stack the habit in your day, and (b) when is your energy highest? Morning, afternoon, or evening – so that you can be the most successful.

Every time you make toast, do as many pushups as you can on the counter before it pops, or every night before bed, do a 1-minute plank on the floor.

Or, the next time you are heading to the playground with your kids or grandkids, use the bench as a functional training tool.

Try some bench squats, triceps dips and agility drills instead of sitting while the kids are playing?

Easy peasy!

As Clear says,

“Good habits make time your ally. Bad habits make time your enemy.”

Stack and play!

Your friend and coach,  Jan xox


P.S.  Whenever you’re ready, I can help!

  1. Download all the free assessment tools here to discover how to establish your play habit, find more time, and have fun doing it!
  2. When I learn about awesome resources around Play, I love to share them. Pat Rumbaugh is the cofounder of Let’s Play America and is affectionately known by many as “The Play Lady.” She founded the play advocacy organization TakomaPlays! in Takoma Park, Maryland, USA and was a physical education teacher and coach for more than 25 years. She’s just published an excellent book called Let’s Play Outside.  If you have kids, grandkids or work with children, I highly suggest this fantastic book as inspiration for young ones everywhere to get outside and play in their surroundings!

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About the Author: Janet Omstead

To re-ignite people’s passion for play (movement) to fight chronic disease while improving their quality of life as they age.

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