Bringing Your Body Into Balance

My 100+ pound weight loss is what grabs people's attention. However, my weight loss was merely a side effect of finally taking my health and happiness into my own hands and finding that perfect balance. Body, mind, spirit. It all matters.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Day 7 of 28 Day Challenge: Move It Monday

What better way to start our week than with movement. This challenge is not about losing weight. This challenge is about waking up our minds and our bodies through exercise. For different people this challenge will mean different things. 

For the people who struggle with adhering to exercise at all, here is your challenge.

First, here are some blog posts I've made on the subject of exercise that may help motivate you to move:
 Second, I highly recommend you don't pick any form of exercise that you dislike. In fact, I recommend the exact opposite. Do something you enjoy. Even if it's something as simple as taking a walk with your kids. As long as you're up and moving more than usual, it counts!!

The goal right now is just to create a habit. And this will be a habit you only have to commit to once a week. On Mondays. That's it! You will just resolve to move in some kind of manner for a minimum of 10 minutes, one time a week. Who can't do that?! I really urge anyone who hasn't tried strength training to give it a go. Strength training is one of the first ways that I got truly hooked on exercise.

Whatever you choose to do, if you exercise once a week for four weeks, you will have began to create the habit of movement. Then you can build on it from there. Your body is very good to adapting and expecting certain patterns. You may find that after 4 weeks of Monday evening walks that your body and mind tells you it's time to lace up even though the challenge is over.

Okay, for those of you who already exercise on a regular basis. I have a different challenge for you. Shake it up! In you're in a rut, always doing the same thing, do something completely different. A good example is that I have a tendency to do Zumba every Monday night for my cardio. Okay, this is actually a horrible example because I love love love Monday night Zumba and have no desire to do something else instead! However, what I can do is resolve that I'm either going to do some ab work before or after or I'm going to push way harder than I usually do (although I push pretty darn hard! can you not in Zumba?!). The third way you can shake up your Monday workout is to get up super early before your day usually starts and get your workout out of the way first thing. I have a blog post that pleads The Case for Morning Exercise.

So there's three ways you can shake up your Monday if you're already a pretty dedicated exerciser:
  • Do something completely different and create some muscle confusion
  • Push yourself harder than you usually do
  • Get your exercise in before your day begins
And remember, exercise is not just for weight loss and athletes. We are made to move! Exercise alters our hormones and actually changes our brain chemistry!! The more we exercise the more we will notice things like improved memory, improved concentration, better sleep, appetite control, lower stress levels and the lifting of the infamous "brain fog". 

I am always recommending this book but it's because it's sooo good. Check out "The Spark" by John J. Ratey (also available on audio). It really helps you to understand and appreciate the science behind exercise.

So, Happy Monday! Let's Move!!


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