Most of us know exercise does a body (and mind) good! But many women aren't getting the movement their body needs to support healthy mobility, bones, cardio health and muscles.
If you find yourself struggling to find the time to make a consistent fitness routine happen, you're not alone. The number one reason women give for avoiding exercise is lack of time, the second is motivation. And the fact is as a coach I've heard it all. From busy schedules, to unpredictable weeks and lengthy to-do lists, to lack of know-how and overwhelm.
But the truth is most of our reasons for avoiding exercise are just excuses. The reality is we all have the same 24 hours in a day, and waiting til we have more time, well, we could be waiting a long, long time. Instead it's how we use those hours (and minutes) each day that can either create possibilities or present challenges. Those twenty minutes scrolling social media could be used for strength training or a walk around your neighborhood. The ten minutes sucked up by the snooze on your alarm clock could be used for bodyweight exercises or yoga. And the five minutes you have before your appointment could be used for some light stretching.
There are all sorts of simple ways we can add more movement to our day! It's all about thinking outside the box and maximizing your minutes for optimal benefit.
By keeping it simple, you make it realistic, and that means you're more likely to do it (and keep on doing it). 10,000 steps a day can sound like A LOT if you're currently averaging less than 5,000, but one small step at a time, you can increase that movement and make it count!
Why are so many people sitting more and more?
For starters there's been a steady increase in desk jobs, longer work days, and hours of sitting in the car, bus or train over the past decade. You’ve probably heard it before, that sitting too much is bad for your health. In fact, studies show increased sitting can lead to weight gain, increase your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, contribute to depression, anxiety and back pain.
A study in 2017 found a direct connection between how sedentary someone's lifestyle is and their risk for an early death. And another study in 2015 showed that sitting for prolonged periods of time had negative health outcomes -- regardless of one's physical activity. Which basically means that hitting the gym for an hour doesn't negate the damage done from sitting at a desk for eight hours straight five days a week.
The solution? Find more ways to move throughout the day.
12 ways to move more each day:
Take the stairs rather than the elevator or escalator.
Do calf raises while you brush your teeth or squats while you blow dry your hair.
Dance while you're making dinner, cleaning the house, or just for fun!
Stand up or pace around the room while you talk on the phone.
Take a 30-second break every hour to stand up and drink water. Bonus: you'll have to get up more frequently to walk to use the restroom!
Walk to the furthest restroom.
Schedule a walk-and-talk: great for both personal and professional chats.
Use a standing desk: you'll increase blood flow and naturally burn more calories throughout the day!
Do some chair exercises (chair yoga anyone?) on your lunch break.
Do bodyweight exercises while you watch your favorite show.
Park further from the store entrance.
Ditch the leaf blower and grab a broom or rake. Bonus: you'll recruit muscles throughout your body!
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