As in previous blogs, I will try to avoid the word ‘exercise’ as so many people would rather receive a poke in the eye! I am therefore going to say ‘activity’ or ‘move more’.
When you start a new activity and use muscles which have been (mostly) sedentary, you may feel some soreness, however the rewards far outweigh a little discomfort. Day by day you will see, feel and enjoy the benefits. Your choice of activity is paramount, if you are going to ‘stick with it’ you need to find your flow, rhythm, and inner strength. The activity needs to become part of you where it is normal every day practice and not just rolled out on high days and holidays.
Okay; so you are with me on this, what now? Why are you still hesitating? Let’s take a look at the most common barriers:
Time: Time is most likely the biggest barrier, ‘I don’t have time’. Well let’s work a miracle and make time! Think outside of the box. Where is a small window of time (again we ideally want every day)? Do you clean your teeth in the morning and evening? If yes, how on earth do you find time for that when you have no time? OK I jest, but it is an opportunity to multi task and gives you 2 minutes twice a day for a posture check and mini abs workout. How many times do you boil the kettle? Again another small opportunity to mobilise your neck and shoulders. How do you get to work, school or college? If by public transport, get off the bus or train 1 or 2 stops early and walk. Take the stairs or walk up the escalators. So without even trying, we have found about 30 minutes of time available to be activity and move more. That’s our first miracle and we have not even been trying! Now onto some more meaningful, (designed) activities and how to find time. This is important stuff, so you may need to move something around to fit it in, being active far outweighs so many other commitments. Take out a pen and paper or your diary and plan some time. Don’t let time pass by or dictate to you, take control and make this your resolution.
Finance: Do something ‘free’; walking, running or cycling (if you have a bicycle). Find a new activity you can learn and practice at home Yoga, Pilates, or Tia Chi. It needs be a routine that flows with concentration, breathing and precision. It needs to become part of you and something you do every (or most) days.
I’m not ‘Fit’ enough to exercise: This is a bit like saying I am too hungry to eat or not wet enough to go swimming! It is often an excuse/barrier along with other physical barriers, ‘I’m too old, I have a bad back, I’m too heavy, I have a bad hip or shoulder’. These are all sound reasons to be careful with your choice of activity and even instructor/trainer, however physiological barriers are excuses and not a reason to avoid leading a more active and health lifestyle.
Location: ‘There is nowhere near me or I can’t get there’. Again this is another excuse. The answer is the same as time. Find windows and opportunities where you can be more active.
I am too stressed: HELLO – Exercise, activity and movement is one of the miracle medicines for stress. As with time and finance, discover an activity you can learn and practice at home. For stress management it needs to be an activity where you work with controlled breathing. Yoga, Pilates or Tia Chi would be ideal however any physical activity will reap benefits to release stress.
Commitment: ‘It never works and I won’t stick to it’. Yes it will work, have a positive frame of mind; work with a qualified PT or instructor and set realistic (smart) goals. Work towards those goals, smash them and set new goals.
Don’t wait for the New Year for a New You. Start now, find activities you will love. Work with a qualified and registered PT or instructor. If finance is a barrier, look for a starting discount. Gyms and Fitness Professionals want to work with you, so seek out the best opportunity and start now on your ‘New You Resolution’.
Inspired Health and Fitness – The complete approach to health, fitness and wellbeing at work. Passionate about Pilates. See website for services available and testimonials.
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