Don’t have enough time? Over repetitive reps? Lost your mojo? We suggest 19 (new) ways to reignite your passion for exercise.

I love exercising. Nine times out of 10, I’ll move appointments around in my diary to fit in that all-important hour to move and stay fit. (Sadly, I’m not one of those early birds who gets 20km under her belt before the sun’s up. I wish!)

But that’s the nine times I’m up and at ‘em – what about the 10th time, when I’ll find every excuse in the book to put off a session?

And then there’s that feeling you sometimes have when you lace up your trainers and think, “Let me just get this done. I’m not in the mood. In fact, I’m a bit bored with this. But hey, I need to shed the kilojoules from that extra slice of cake.” No motivation to train? That’s a calamity!

Description: Bored with exercise?

So how do you overcome this jadedness? If your excuses sound lame, even to yourself, you may need to think of ways to bring the joy back into your exercise sessions. It’s always possible to squeeze exercise into your life, even if you have only 20 minutes. Don’t let those lazy days add up – try these tips and tricks to get your exercise mojo back.

Not much time? Double your efficiency

Description: “Do what you can, from where you are, with what you have,”

“Do what you can, from where you are, with what you have,”

Many of us are genuinely time-poor, particularly during the week, so we understand if you can’t manage an hour’s workout, But that doesn’t mean you need to need to write off an entire day.

You need just 20 minutes (or less) for these super-effective workouts.

“Do what you can, from where you are, with what you have,” advises Joburg-based Bodycoach wellness consultant Jocelyn Thompson.

“If you take a lot of small, manageable steps over and over again, you’ll soon see how far you’ve come:

Here’s how:

1.    Don’t just do squats

Do three sets of 15 squats, back-to-back, while lifting 3kg dumbbells above your head. Compound exercises, which get more muscle groups working in union, get your heart rate up rapidly as your work rate doubles.

And you don’t need to go to gym to do these squats – try out the Trojan Soft-Touch Set of dumbbells from Makro (visit marko.co.za).

2.    Try power plate

“Thirty minutes is the maximum time you can spend on a Power Plate. Use that time to get a workout that’ll boost your circulation and allow you to perform a strength-training routine that’ll tone and shape you. It’ll also give you a massage. Ideally, work with a personal trainer until you’re comfortable and know exactly what it can offer,” says Selby Sithole, a personal trainer at Virgin Active Soweto.

3.    Be explosive

Description: Be explosive

Health and wellness expert Lisa Raleigh recommends explosive squats. “Lower your buttocks down towards a chair, holding on to a dumbbell with both hands. As you’re about to touch down, rise back up – when you’ve almost risen to your full height, throw your body weight a small distance into the air, so your feet leave the ground. Then repeat.”

4.    Express pilates

If you’re a Pilates fan, renowned US Pilates guru Mari Winsor’s Cardio Pilates DVD will blast those kilojoules with faster-paced routines and some additional strength training. This DVD offers three effective workouts for a busy woman: a 12-minute “quick fix”, a lower-body workout that’ll take you 13 minutes to complete, and a 25-minute Pilates Express Workout. Order yours from Crystal Brook (crystalbrook.co.za, 011-463-8624) or buy from Sportsmans Warehouse. See gaiam.com for more info.

5.    Use the stairs for strength training

Taking the stairs at work is great – but try taking them two at a time, slowly, maintain perfect balance as you climb. If they’re small steps, try three at a time. We typically think of improving our cardio with stair-climbing, but stairs are also great for strength-training,

6.    Body rock

Joburg-based Adventure Boot Camp trainer Michelle Rozowsky is a huge fan of BodyRock.TV’s home workouts. “Don’t let the ripped bods put you off – there are workouts for all fitness levels, including beginners,” she says. See bodyrock.tv for more info.

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