Monday, June 3, 2013

Microwave Multitasking

Everyone has a microwave that is used often in the course of a day. It's great for making a cup of tea or coffee--two minutes to heat water on high heat. Defrosting freezer items can take longer such as some frozen meats might take ten minutes on medium to low heat. Frozen items like precooked chicken can be heated in two minutes. Cooking a raw potato quickly can take only 6-8 minutes in a microwave. Microwaves are often used around my house to heat some leftover foods like vegetables, or spaghetti, etc. Snacks like popcorn or pretzels are easy to heat in a microwave.

So with all that stuff taking time to prepare, what to do with the two minutes that it takes the microwave to heat something? It's not enough time to go back to reading my book. It's not enough time to go back to preparing other things for a meal. After all if a cup of soup is in the microwave, it might boil over, so there I stand watching the turntable inside while the soup heats. It became obvious that it was a perfect opportunity to do a little multitasking while keeping an eye on the contents in the microwave. It isn't multitasking in the truest sense of the word, because I'm just watching the microwave do something and I want something to do while I watch it.

In the two minutes that it takes to heat a cup of water for tea, it is possible to do 50 lunges. Jumping jacks make a good choice, because one limits the time one does those anyway. Squats are easy to do in place while watching the soup or cup of water rotating around inside the microwave. Stretching exercises are quick and easy to keep busy and make good use of the time spent watching the microwave. I like put my hands behind my head, which bends my elbows, and lift the opposite knee to touch elbow to knee, alternating sides to see how many I can do in one minute. Sometimes for variety, I side-step back and forth across the kitchen and count how many I can do in the two minutes before the tea is ready.

Pushups are not a favorite of mine. I would rather use the set of dumbbells that weigh ten pounds each, which I keep in my kitchen corner. I can pick them up and do curls, or lift them over my head, or any number of movements while standing far enough away to watch the activity in the microwave and still move freely. Any activity that keeps me moving and using energy is acceptable. I don't have a formal list of activities that I do during that time when I babysit the microwave, I alternate with my mood. Sitting in a chair is the only unacceptable option. I already sit too much when I am reading. I need a counter where I could stand to read or work on the computer which is what I did when I worked. Exercising when I take a break helps.


  1. You are so wonderful to encourage us to move and exercise. I've been so very up-to-my-ears with the travel stuff that I haven't been able to get my exercising in. You have motivated me!!!

  2. What a great idea - micro workouts.
    BTW, I'm not sure I can touch my knee to my elbow. I'll have to work on that one.

  3. That's pretty cool, exercising while waiting for the 'wave. I'll try it! :-)

  4. Great ideas! Wow, you have inspired me!