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For most of our history, human beings have been engaged in manual labor. It's only recently that many of us have taken on work that requires us to sit behind a desk all day. Our bodies weren't made for this and a host of new ailments are the result. To counter our modern lives, we need to make time to get our bodies moving.

For most of us, we need to set aside 1 to 1 ½ hours per day, every day, to keep ourselves in good physical condition. People looking to achieve competitive results may need to do more.

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The best way to achieve this consistency is to exercise at the same time of day every day so that it becomes an essential part of your daily routine. For me, early mornings work best. I'm up between 5 and 6 am, I feed our dog, empty the dishwasher, make the kids breakfast, and then head down to the basement where I have a little exercise room, or I'll head outside if the weather is nice.

Working out in the morning has several advantages. You get it done first, so you don't need to worry the rest of the day hoping to fit it in. No meeting is going to get in the way. Plus, there is no need for caffeine in the morning and your metabolism is running at an accelerated rate for the rest of the day.

Key Concepts in Fitness