Many men and women cite hectic schedules as the primary reason they fail to get enough exercise. Commitments to work and family may dominate your schedule, but daily exercise can drastically reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes and help reduce stress.

Because exercise can vastly improve quality of life and even life expectancy, it's imperative that even the busiest men and women find time to exercise several times per week. The following are a handful of ways to do just that.

* Transform your commute. Many men and women find their commutes to be a significant waste of time. But instead of sitting in traffic or napping on public transportation, consider transforming your daily commute into an exercise regimen. If you live close to your office, ride your bicycle to work each day rather than driving or taking the bus or train. If that's not an option, avoid working during your commute so you aren't stressing out on your way into or home from the office. Instead, spend your commute listening to an audiobook in the car or reading a book or watching a movie if you take public transportation. Use your commute as an opportunity to exercise, ease into your day or unwind after a long day rather than extending the workday.

* Make the most of your lunch hour. Many working professionals are aware that a big lunch in the middle of the day can drain them of energy and make the afternoon crawl. So instead of indulging in a big lunch, use your lunch hour to squeeze in a workout. If your company has an on-site fitness facility, visit it during your lunch hour. If not, walk around the campus during lunch instead of sitting at your desk. Exercising during your lunch hour is a great way to squeeze in a workout, and chances are your afternoon productivity will benefit from your midday workout.

* Get up early. Men and women who workout in the morning often rave about the impact such workouts have on the rest of their days. While it might not be easy to rise when it's still dark out, waking up as little as 30 minutes before you normally would can work wonders. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend adults get at least two hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, such as brisk walking, every week and some muscle-strengthening activities that focus on all the major muscle groups on two or more days per week. So setting your alarm 30 minutes earlier and making the most of that dusty fitness equipment in the basement is all that stands between you and a much healthier lifestyle. Once you get used to exercising in the early morning hours, you might realize just how much more energy you have throughout the day and how little you miss that extra sleep in the morning.

* Forgo happy hour for workout hour. The days when professionals would finish off a workday with a few drinks at a nearby tavern are largely a thing of the past, but some professionals still like to indulge in one or two alcoholic beverages at the end of the workday. If that's your modus operandi but you bemoan your lack of time to get to the gym, then say goodbye to happy hour in favor of working out at the gym. Working out after work is a healthier way to relieve stress than having a few drinks, and choosing to work out instead of going out for drinks is a great way to trim your waistline.

Daily exercise can drastically improve your quality of life while significantly reducing your risk for potentially deadly diseases. And even the busiest men and women can find time to exercise every day when motivated to do so.