Most of us agree that we should be working out, for various reasons. Many of us resolve to do it as part of our New Years resolutions, often making it to the list year after year.
That being said, exercise is pretty much The. Worst.
I mean, we could be reading books or baking delicious things or curled up under a blanket or ANYTHING ELSE that isn’t working out. Am I right?
Unfortunately, when I live a life without movement, I limit myself. When my body isn’t used to moving around and being active because I don’t regularly pursue it (I really like to sit, guys) then when it is time to do fun things with my family, I don’t have the energy or the stamina to do it. Even worse, I may hate moving so much that I miss out on beautiful family walks or sledding with my kids because I have so conditioned my brain that I don’t “do” those things. Sledding is so fun! Who knew?
I went to the Belong Tour a few months ago with my mama. Angela Davis was there- she is a fitness motivational coach. At first I was super irritated because she was making me move! Didn’t they know I had come here to eat junk food and hang out with my mama and be inspired with words? Not to move my body. Nevertheless, I am a good sport usually, and move my body I did. There was something very powerful about the loud music and moving in simple ways while Angela yelled beautiful strong words over us. It impacted me in a big way. Moving our body is part of feeling alive, and that feeds our souls. What doesn’t feed our souls is trying to do things to please other people or just check it off some long dreadful to-do list.
I don’t think that we need to EXERCISE THREE TIMES A WEEK OR ELSE. Because guess what? Most of us aren’t going to do that. We are going to get overwhelmed and do nothing. Instead, I want to challenge you.
Just move your body.
I want you to think about what you need: Is it alone time? Is it a workout that allows you to exercise early in the morning or late at night while your kids are sleeping? Or maybe a class you can catch before you pick your preschooler up? Do you need something with people to motivate you? Do you need to change what you do every single time and follow your whims? Do you need to have a solid plan and know what to expect and which parts of your body to move each time? Brainstorm ideas on what would motivate you to look forward to exercising.
- When I first became interested in working out I got super overwhelmed because I felt like if I started I needed to do it “the right way.” There are things you can do to harm your body by exercising incorrectly- that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about the “rules”. You know, the ones that say move at least 30 minutes every day or at least 3 times a week and try to change which muscles you are working, don’t forget cardio and now that you are exercising you need to change how you eat and maybe you shouldn’t have that ice cream tonight and ohmygosh nevermind. Nevermind.
This is when I realized, moving my body, in whatever way sounds fun that day or that week, is better than the overwhelmed me that tries to do it right and stays home and does nothing instead. Once a month exercising is better than no exercising and a closed minded rebellion against all things movement.
30 WAYS TO JUST MOVE YOUR BODY
- Move your body at home.
- Move your body at the gym.
- Take a walk with your kids: baby in a carrier, kids in a stroller or walking, whatever works for you and your brood. I now have 1 stroller rider and 2 walkers/bike riders but it used to be 1 in a carrier 1 in a stroller, 1 in a carrier 2 in a stroller, etc. We walk to a park that is about 10 minutes away when the weather is nice.
- Take a walk by yourself and listen to a podcast or some music.
- Lift weights
- Do yoga
- Lift your groceries bags while you are carrying them in
- Do squats while you brush your teeth
- Hold in your abs while you run up the stairs
- Stretch out on your bed before you go to sleep
- Go to a Zumba class. Take a friend with you and get coffee afterward. I met one of my best friends this way- so worth it.
- Keep your eyes open for classes that are free around town. Our library does free yoga once a month on the weekend!
- BTSPT- This is a super serious army acronym. Between The Sheets Physical Training. 😉 Chaplain recommended.
- Hold your kid’s bike handles and run with him as he learns to ride instead of watching from the sidelines.
- Go to the gym and pick something you can exercise while you read a book- elliptical, bike, or treadmill?
- If you have a quiet environment where people/animals don’t crawl on you, read a book and do some yoga at home!
- Workout videos/apps- There are so many out there!
- Do Crossfit. I did this while my husband was deployed and it was fantastic. It is intense but at the end you feel like you earned your stuff. I don’t always feel that way with yoga- like ugh, I’m tired but I shouldn’t be. Crossfit makes me feel like a beast.
- Go walking or exercise with a friend who lives nearby. I know a lot of moms do this as a running group in the morning before their kids get up or take kids in strollers.
- Take an evening walk with your husband. My husband and I have some of our best talks when we are walking.
- Walk somewhere nearby. We just moved close to downtown and are able to walk to all kinds of places- but it is still a further walk than Adrienne-who-doesn’t-like-to-move is comfortable with, so I have to stretch myself to do this.
- Push your kids on the swings, and really give it some oomph!
- Go for a run. Add a podcast if you like.
- Wrestle with your husband. Have him teach you some things.
- Take a self defense class.
- Run a marathon or do a fun-run in your area. Color Runs have expanded to all kinds of other things now.
- Start an exercise group
- Work out on the grass while your kids play at the park
- Go for a hike. It’s beautiful and slow paced and great for making memories.
- Go canoeing. So fun!!
This is just the beginning of a list of ideas on how to be moving your body. There are as many ways to move your body as there are people! Add some ideas in the comments!
- Exercising occasionally in the evening so I get some alone time in (!!!!!!) while my husband does the evening routine with the kids.
- Taking a book or planning to have a podcast so that I look forward to the time. I am a content-nerd!
- Not pressuring myself to work out a certain amount or a certain way, so that I stay open to movement.
What are some things you can do to kick start yourself and get your body moving?