What if I don’t have time to exercise 60 minutes a day?

What if I don’t have time to exercise 60 minutes a day?

Break up your exercise into smaller periods of time.

Exercise for a shorter period of time. Remember, anything is better than nothing.

If you don’t have time for 60 minutes of continuous exercise, exercise for shorter periods of time, multiple times throughout the day to add up to a total of 60 minutes.


Instead of exercising for 60 continuous minutes, exercise for 20 minutes on three separate occasions throughout the day.

Shorter periods of aerobic exercise have been shown to be just as effective in producing fitness and weight loss results when compared to long periods of exercise of the same total duration.

Committing to shorter periods of exercise may also help you stick to an exercise program.

Jakicic JM, Wing RR, Butler BA, Robertson RJ. Prescribing exercise in multiple short bouts versus one continuous bout: effects on adherence, cardiorespiratory fitness, and weight loss in overweight women. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1995 Dec; 19(12):893-901.
Jakicic JM, Marcus BH, Gallagher KI, Napolitano M, Lang W. Effect of exercise duration and intensity on weight loss in overweight, sedentary women: a randomized trial. JAMA 2003 Sep 10; 290(10):1323-30.
Murphy, Marie H.; Hardman, Adrianne E. Training effects of short and long bouts of brisk walking in sedentary women. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: Jan 1998; Vol 30, Issue 1:152-57.

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Stephanie Averkamp

About the Author was created by Stephanie Averkamp, a recognized health and fitness professional and sole-author of the content on this website. Stephanie's approach to weight loss emphasizes making small, realistic, and permanent lifestyle changes. Read more...

Stephanie Averkamp

Our Approach: Short-term solutions (like dieting) are unrealistic and ineffective because at some point they end. As soon as a diet or program ends, so do the results. Permanent weight loss is a journey; it's not a race or competition and there is no finish line. Read more...