Do you feel sluggish, tired and low on energy? It might be because you're not getting enough activity throughout your day. Your body is not designed to be glued to a chair or a sofa. Your body is made to move!
Modern life has cut out the labor of growing our food, doing our chores and getting around. All these conveniences have led to a sedentary lifestyle; we sit more than we move. And you already know that an active lifestyle helps to prevent obesity and all the health problems that come with it. So, let's explore how to add some movement to your day.
Before you embark on a plan to cut your couch time, you might want to consider ‘why' you want to add more activity to your day. Having a goal improves the odds of your following through, what's yours: burn calories, greater flexibility, increase your balance, enhance digestion, strengthen your muscles, boost your brain power, quiet your mind, or decrease stress. Once you've clarified your why you're ready to get into action.
If you're one of the folks that struggle with exercise one of the ways to shift gears on this is to consider it movement. Change the framework and you'll be surprised how you can find time and opportunity to include some kind of activity in your day. Here are some simple ways to add movement to your day:
1. Take the stairs. Pass on the elevator or escalator and put those muscles through their paces. Take the stairs every chance you get.
2. Work out during TV commercials. Do a set of 15-20 planks, pushups, squats or lunges. Imagine if you broke up the average 5 hours of television viewing with sets of exercises. You're well on your way!
3. Sit on an exercise ball at your desk. It will strengthen your core, as you stabilize your movement, and you can also take breaks and do 20 crunches on the ball.
4. Spend 20 minutes on a rebounder. It stimulates all internal organs, moves the cerebral-spinal fluid, and does wonders for the intestines. It also stimulates the lymphatic system, helping to remove waste and toxins at the cellular level.
5. Ride on a swing. Taking the kids to the park? Join them on the swings, race them to see who can go highest.
6. Grow a garden. Yardwork is great because not only does it increase your physical activity, but it also gives you an excuse to be outside. Pulling weeds, mowing the lawn, trimming the hedge, and raking leaves are all very physically taxing and like cleaning, they use a range of muscle groups.
7. Walk every chance you get. Park your car away from the entrance of the store. Take a walk after dinner. Walk to the grocery star and buy groceries for one meal only. Make repeat trips.
8. Walk your dog. This is one of the best excuses to exercise. Your dog will love the opportunity to be out and about. You'll boost your fitness.
9. Take a dance break. Put on your favorite music and dance your cares away. Grab the kiddos and make it a family dance party. Experience the delight of moving your body rhythmically and unleashing your joy!
10. Stand up. Stand up when you're talking on the phone, get a standup desk, take small breaks from sitting throughout the day. Stand up more than you sit down.
Your body has a built in need for movement. It comes alive with it! Adding little bursts of activity throughout your day will not only nourish your body, it will clear your mind and impart a sense of well being. Let's move it!
PS Ready to move your body?
My journey with fitness and my body started when I was about nine years old when I came across an issue of Cosmopolitan magazine. I remember thinking how utterly perfect the models were and how I longed to look just so!
Well, for a Cuban girl with generous hips and thighs that is a hell of a goal. I remember dieting when I was twelve, drinking those horrendous protein shakes when I was fourteen and so I entered the battle with my body that would ensue through adolescence, pregnancy and most of my adult life.
Well, there is life after beauty magazines. In my journey of trying to figure out this paradox of health and beauty I became a personal trainer, a fitness instructor and holistic nutritionist.
One of the things that puzzled me most was how some clients – given the same training and nutrition recommendations – could not succeed. It was so frustrating, they just couldn’t stick with their nutritional programs. Why did some diets work for certain people and not for others? Why did SO many people have trouble with weight loss?
Every month you have a new program, book, equipment, gimmick that will change your body. Millions of people join gyms, buy supplements, and order gadgets in the hopes of changing their bodies. Over and over again they are disappointed, discouraged and give up.
Many people earnestly put their all into an exercise or nutritional program and are frustrated when they don't get results. That's because nutrition is not the same for every body. Your nutritional requirements are unique.
Your food becomes your cells, your blood, your body. It even affects your thinking. Think of a time when you were low on energy and grabbed a cup of coffee, a chocolate bar or something with sugar in it to give you a lift. You don't make bad food choices because you lack will power. You make bad food choices because you are eating food that is not full of ‘life.'
And that's not all. Your body is also impacted by how you think and feel. I remember when I co-owned a World Gym Fitness Center and women would say to me, “I hate my belly! Help me get rid of this.” I'd answer, “No! Don't hate your belly, love it up.” I had discovered that the way I felt and spoke about my body directly impacted my results.
The more I cultivated a loving approach to my body, the better it responded. I had my best body in my 40's, not my 20's. The body IS flexible, and things are not as set in stone as they appear.
Curious yet? If you'd like some support on creating a flexible reality – and tangible results – for your body, fill out the Self Care Mastery Assessment and I'll follow up with a link to my scheduler for a complimentary session.
Step into a life, and body, that is powerful, exciting and totally crafted by you!