How to Keep Moving When Life Gets Challenging
Because we're all (the entire world) in quite an all-encompassing crisis, I thought it would be appropriate to share some very actionable and useful tips on how to keep yourself and loved ones healthy until life can resume a bit more freedom.
Eating nutritionally dense foods and maintaining good mineral levels is obviously a priority. But that flies in the face of what human nature automatically gravitates to, in times of crisis — comfort food, and disregard for routine.
I will touch on some "eating well" tiny little actions you can take later, but today I want to address the other vital part of health (mental AND physical).
Yes — you have to figure out a way to keep yourself moving.
There are 2 layers here: exercise -- as in working out (which happens once a day or 3-4 times a week). And continuously moving throughout the day (once or twice per hour of waking time).
Both are vital to keep you sane and mentally healthy. For the sake of a deep-dive here’s a superbly interesting episode on how your eyes, through self-generated motion like walking for e.g., have a direct soothing impact on your nervous system and cortisol production.
For the exercise stuff, there are an endless amount of very good sites online and now on TV that you can use to help you out - so you don’t even have to leave your home.
What you choose will depend on your taste and ability (beginner, intermediate, advanced, fast v slow, intense v gentle, short v long, varied v consistent, etc.)
Choose what you enjoy and will keep you coming back!
Genius — I know ;o) But as obvious as that is — you'd be surprised how many people force themselves to go to classes that they hate.
Pick a variety of workouts so that you can have an all-around functional strength, mobility and endurance. Do 3 of those a week - any duration would do and ideally spaced out with a day of walking, swimming, dancing, or gentle running inbetween.
Some of my favourites are:
CalisthenicMovement (on YouTube) - these guys are freaking awesome for functional strength training with a solid understanding of good mobility and all-around strength development.
Foundation Training (on YouTube) - if you want something challenging but not explosive and bouncy.
Kettlebell Secrets (on YouTube) - if you like (and have) kettlebells.
ZuzkaLight - if you like intense, short, HIIT style workouts with and without equipment.
TRXtraining - if you have a suspension trainer.
Apple Fitness + - if you want instructor-led variety of disciplines.
FIIT.tv - if you like scheduled, instructor-led workouts of all varieties with an option of a competition leader board.
Some of these guys have a paid subscription or course you can follow along with, but they also have their free stuff, that are enough to keep you busy (and fit), or at least enough to give you a fair sampler to establish if you like them long term or not.
It’s Not a Forever Choice!
Here’s something else no one talks about: you don’t have to approach this as a marriage. What you decide on now doesn’t have to be what you end up with forever.
You’re totally free to change your mind later. In fact it’s healthy and sane to do so when you feel the old stuff is getting old.
When the fun stops - CHANGE your workout - an easy-to-follow basic measure.
Remember that your mind isn’t stupid - you will keep coming back if it’s interesting or pleasurable (and definitely if it’s both :o)
But Much More Importantly — Create Opportunities to Move!
So — workouts are one thing. And they're relatively easy to come by and choose.
The much harder part is to have the discipline to keep moving throughout the day consistently.
It’s hard in normal times. It’s super hard now with restrictions and ‘hidden’ stress. It's easy to slip into a sedentary life when you can't move in and out of your home freely.
Most of your "opportunities to move" are cut off.
If you have a wearable device (Apple Watch or a Fitbit or other) you usually track your activity levels with, you'll notice the significant decline in movement meters and minutes the past few mounts’ events have created.
But this type of movement is the more important part of your overall long-term health (although obviously, both are VERY important).
Because sitting for most of the day is now likened to smoking in terms of the damage it does to your health.
It affects your neurology by deteriorating your muscular structure and posture, smoothing them and constricting them like a big powerful boa constrictor.
You know I'm all about taking Tiny Little Actions to create massive long-term positive results for yourself.
That's because change is hard enough as it is. So making it so "piss" simple that you can't NOT show up, is one of the best ways to make the changes last long enough to get you the desired results.
So — here are two of my most impactful tiny little actions you can integrate very easily into your day. Pick one and start testing it today.
Or do both - ideally :o)
Your Call to Tiny Little Action
That’s all for today - I’m trying really hard to keep this succinct.
Now - here’s what you can do to turn this ‘sexy info’ into a benefit in your own day.
Pick one or both of the techniques I shared above.
Decide how each will fit into YOUR day - or at least how you would test them.
Bonus - pick a workout site from the list above (or one you find attractive) and find the time to fit it in your week 2-ice.
Let me know how you go with your choices. If you need help on the implementation into your daily routine - don’t forget to check out the full TLA method (free).
And if you have a resource you use already with success, that you’d like to share with me and everyone else here - please just add it to the comments - and thank you :o)