I don't think there is anything that has been more blown out of proportion and overly complicated than exercise. People obsess over the form, the type, and the amount of exercise. They read massive books on the topic all while procrastinating the actual task of exercising. And so many people set a New Year’s goal around exercise that quickly becomes overcomplicated and they give up within the first few weeks. But exercise doesn’t have to be overcomplicated.
Exercise is a good thing - it decreases stress, improves sex, improves mood, and so much more! Exercise gives you a really great life and improves so many things. But you’ve got to make it happen! You're in charge. You are an action-taking problem-solving woman and that type of woman ditches excuses. Don’t overcomplicate it. Just make it happen!
In This Episode Allie Discusses:
The benefits of exercise and the improvements it can have on you physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Why it is important to create consistency with exercise (even if it is just for 10 minutes a day!)
Ways you can create a rhythm with your exercise routine which will help you ditch the excuses when it comes to exercising.
Ideas you can implement in order to stop over complicating exercise.
Mentioned in this Episode:
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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.
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So today we're talking about something that's not my favorite subject and that is exercise. I don't think that there's anything that's gotten more blown out of proportion and overly complicated than exercise. I really don’t think there is anything.
People obsess over the form, the type, the amount of exercise. They're reading massive books on the topic all while procrastinating the actual task of exercising. It's one thing if you love fitness, it's your passion and you do it all the time while also reading, learning and furthering your form and your expertise.
There's nothing wrong with learning about exercise, but a lot of the time that's not the case. It's an average person procrastinating actually doing something that's going to change their life. And that is what happens with so many things so often. I did an episode recently called Stop Overcomplicating Things. It was a short, to-the-point pep talk style episode that came from some things that I tell myself regularly and I was sharing them with you to kick you in the butt too.
And everyone loved it and I love doing it. So, I'm gonna make this a thing. We're going to have these regular ‘stop overcomplicating things’ pep talks here on the podcast and today we're going to talk about how you can stop over complicating exercise.
So I want to know how many of you have made it your New Year's goal to exercise more, whether it's for fitness reasons or the mental benefits of exercise? How many of you have over complicated it so much after you set the goal that you're already not meeting the goal even though we're just a little bit into the New Year? If that's you, definitely share that you're listening to this on Instagram and tag me. You can search for my name or just type allie_that's me.
I love seeing that you guys are listening. I'm not just saying that so that you can share and the podcast can grow (although I love that and I appreciate it) but I really love seeing that you're listening. I love it when you guys type your little blips over the screenshot and tell me, “Oh my gosh, me, I overcomplicate,” or “Yes, I totally do this,” or “I've done this a million times,” or “I've done this already and it's only January 16th.”
I love when you guys share your struggles and what's resonating with you specifically about episodes. So, let me know. I always see them and I love to see that you guys get it. It helps me keep going in all of this. I want to encourage you. I want you to be real with yourself and share, “Yeah. I struggle with this. This is something that I do and I'm going to overcome it because you are.” Because you're action-taking problem-solving woman, right?
I just want to be real myself and share that I spent years overcomplicating exercise. This specific area of my life has been a struggle for me. I always envied women who would make it to the gym every single day no matter what. And also women who loved it. I just never loved it. I never have loved really any type of exercise. I've definitely got my favorites, but I don't love it. I don't super look forward to any form of exercise, whether it's running, yoga, Pilates, dancing or going to the gym. I don't really love anything. I have come back to the same few types of exercise again and again because I like them better, but I've never been one to love exercise. I always procrastinate it. I spent years overcomplicating exercise in my life all while staying 40 to 50 pounds heavier than I am now. It's not just about the weight. That's a very unhealthy place for me to be with my height and my BMI and just the way that my body is.
It was unhealthy. So, don't send me hate messages that “you're focusing on the weight and it's not about that.” I was multiple sizes larger and that size for my height and my body type was very unhealthy. What's more is that my skin was telling me, “I need you to stop. I need help.” I had breakouts like crazy. I had stomach issues. I had leaky gut syndrome. I had adrenal fatigue. I was feeling crappy and tired all the time and that's the point.
All of this was happening while I knew a lot about exercise, but I was overcomplicating it so much that I just stood still and did nothing about it. I wasn't taking any action. Brian did the same thing until he decided to find what he loved and just start, and then fine tune and make changes and adjustments along the way. Now he's lost a bunch of weight and he's still going.
He works out almost every day because he loves what he's doing and he's consistent. He's a person that can learn to love it. And I know that you guys are out there. I know some of you listening do love a form of exercise. Maybe you do procrastinate it. That doesn't mean you don't love it. You're the lucky ones who love something, go do it. When it comes down to it, weight loss, ‘unhealthfulness’ loss is about what you eat.
So, we're going to get into the inspiration for making exercise happen and some ideas to help you stop overcomplicating exercise. Some things that have worked for me that I've seen work for other people. And really shift your mindset from ‘this has to be a certain way.’ It has to be perfect. It has to be so premeditated and preplanned. It's got to be a routine. I've got to get myself set up to do this. Getting yourself out of that ‘all or nothing’ place and just making it happen.
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So first, some inspiration for making exercise happen. You guys, exercise does so many amazing things more than just shift your body and make you look and feel better. Exercise decreases depression and anxiety, which is huge. And not only does it decrease it if you're suffering from it, but it prevents depression and anxiety from setting in if you don't have it.
Exercise decreases stress. It improves sex. It improves mood. It gives you better sleep. It increases self-confidence. It gives your brain a boost, specifically surrounding your memory. These are long-term benefits.
Think about all those things I just listed…less depression and anxiety, decreased stress, better sex, better sleep, better mood, more self-confidence, a brain boost, better memory. That's basically a really great life. Exercise gives you a really great life and improves so many things.
So let's not focus on weight. Let's get out of that diet culture and this like, oh, I need to change my body and, and shame myself.
If you're struggling with that, please go listen to I think it was episode two of this podcast. I'll link to it in show notes, but I have a lot to say on that. If you're struggling with that and you want to shift your perspective on your body, go listen to that episode.
There's just so many good things that come from this.
So, if you need inspiration, dive into some of the scientific about all this stuff. When I exercise, I feel sexier, I feel more confident. My mood is definitely different. Simple exercise is what got me over adrenal fatigue. It was. That was so hard. I would just literally not be able to stay awake at 1:00 every single day. My body was just shot and so exhausted.
I didn’t go to the gym. I didn't start running. I didn't do anything major. I just started to move for 10 to 30 minutes a day. I stopped overcomplicating it and I healed my body. I healed my leaky gut syndrome. When I exercise, I'm more likely to make healthy food choices. There's so many benefits, it's too much to not do this.
So having said that, let's talk about how we can stop overcomplicating exercise and just do it. Okay?
The first thing I want to say is that you have to decide to do something every single day. No excuses. Practice makes perfect. So here's an example. When I decided that I was ready to start writing my book, the first step of that is to write the book proposal. I used to write all the time, but in order to focus on some really big business goals I wanted to meet last year, I put writing on the back burner and I focused on other parts of the business.
And podcasting doesn't leave room for a lot of writing. I definitely jot down a couple of talking points and an outline before recording episodes so I don't forget anything, but it's not writing. I write my emails to you guys every week. That's pretty much it. So I was very out of the practice of writing.
What I did was I decided that I was going to start writing a thousand words every single morning, no excuses, because practice makes perfect. As I wrote a thousand words every single day, it started out pretty crappy. It was unusable. I was just writing. I didn't let myself edit myself. I didn't let myself stop if I got distracted or lost my train of thought. I just wrote whatever I was thinking. It was almost like starting an article on a certain topic and then you would see where my mind started to get distracted because the sentences would change topic and it would not make sense with the rest of the things I had written because writing is kind of like meditation. You just let your mind go and you acknowledge that you're distracted and then you come back to it. Then the writing would kind of circle back to what I had started writing about in the first place.
I did this every day and I got back into the practice of writing. I didn't want to start writing my book (that's my dream) or working on my book proposal out of practice and so I just started to do it every single day. No excuses. Even on Sundays before we go to church, I would write a thousand words every single day. I'm still doing that and I'm probably not going to stop because it's really therapeutic and it's good for me. It's flexing that muscle that I need to get my message out to the world to help women, so it's important.
And it’s just like that with exercising. Decide that you're going to do some part of exercising or bodily movement. Don't call it exercise if it’s an unhappy trigger word for you because I totally get that. Move your body in some way every single day. No excuses. Intentional movement.
Taking a walk with a timer, like a 20-minute walk. Having a dance party with your kids in the living room or something. That's a new tradition that you can start. Maybe you turn on some loud music and you have a living room dance party with your kids while dinner's cooking on the stove. Even two songs is almost 10 minutes and that's great for your body. Do something every single day. No excuses.
Let's revisit the episode of The Purpose Show with Greg McKeown where he talked about taping the $100 bill to your wall and deciding you're going to do something every single day, no excuses, and if you miss a day, you have to rip up the $100 bill.
Not all of us can afford to just have a $100 bill sitting there, but you get the point. Do something that makes you like, “I can't not do this.” What was the other example he gave? The other example he gave was a guy who had his favorite bottle of wine and if he didn't do this thing that he promised he would do every single day, if he missed a day, he had to dump the bottle of wine down the drain. Sometimes wastefulness like that is just such a hard thing. It's such a trigger for people that they will do whatever that deal they made with themselves is rather than dump that wine down the drain.
Even if it's 12:00 midnight and you're up really late, you've had a crazy day with the kids and you're finally going to go to bed, but you haven't done your exercise for the day. Just walking around your house downstairs. Just pace back and forth and listen to calming music or something. Just something. Don't let yourself not.
The next thing I want to say, other than just doing something every single day no excuses, is how much power there is in 10 minutes. Doing something, and since we're talking about exercise, we'll go into that specifically. Exercising for 10 minutes is so powerful. Ten minutes is better than no minutes and a lot of time saying, “Okay, I'm just going to do this for 10 minutes,” often leads to more.
I love Robin Long. She is the founder of thebalancedlifeonline. It’s a Pilates membership that's a whole blog and website with lots of awesome things on there. She has a Pilates subscription, a monthly membership that I'm a part of and it's awesome. She always says she'll start to just do 10 minutes - she'll do squats and arm dips on the toilet while her kids are in the bath - and it's so easy to squeeze in 10 minutes here, 10 minutes there. And 10 minutes leads to more.
Realize that it doesn't have to be all or nothing. You don't have to go to the gym for an hour three days a week. If that works for you, great. But it might not; it doesn't for me, that's for sure.
So just think 10 minutes. I'm just going to go for a brisk 10-minute walk. That's it. And just let that lead into more if it can. If your kids are being good and you can squeeze in another 10-minute yoga video then do it. If not, okay, maybe you could try 10 minutes later or just let it be 10 minutes a day.
If you were to do intentional movement for 10 minutes a day, every day you would see a difference in your mood. You would feel better. You'd feel more confident. You'd make better food choices. And you would notice a change in yourself.
I think the point is to keep moving throughout the day (and we moms are pretty good at that already, so not a lot of worries there) but just where? How can you make changes? How can you sit less? For me, I sit when I work. I sit at my desk and so I will break it up and just stand up and do some squats, go for a quick walk around the block, or just stand up and stretch my legs and do some arm movements. Just something. Get up. Keep moving. Do whatever you can to just sit less.
Have that mentality. Decide that you're going to take a walk in the morning, in the evening, or both and make that a rhythm. I always am talking to you guys about the importance of developing rhythms and this is a huge one. Just take a walk.
If it's winter and it's freezing, bundle up. If it's not something you want to do, then literally just walk around your house. Make it a ‘pickup’ walking party. Set a timer for 10 minutes and walk briskly through your house just picking up and putting things away. That's it. It doesn't have to be complicated.
Don't forget the living room dance party idea. That could be a new tradition that you start to get your body moving every night when dinner cooks or every morning after your kids eat breakfast. Set up a trigger so that you can say, every time we do this, I do this. And it's an exercising rhythm that you don't even have to think about.
Also, the power of noise canceling headphones for a living room workout is strong. It's very powerful. I love yoga videos on YouTube as well as, like I mentioned, Robin Long’s Pilates membership.
If you are a person that gets frustrated by a lot of noise or sibling bickering in the background while you’re trying to get your workout done and your kids are old enough to be okay with you having headphones in, somebody could know to come and get you if something happens (don't put headphones in and block out your baby or little toddler that needs you to pay attention) but get some noise cancelling headphones. Get them, do your workout, put some music on and just zone out for a few minutes.
Ask yourself where in your day or week you can fit in a new rhythm. For example, I've got a great one for you. Every time you listen to The Purpose Show on Wednesdays, you take the kids for a long walk. Find something. The point is you've got to ditch excuses because you know what the truth is? People who meet goals, the doers out there, they don't have excuses.
The kids can come with you. You can do it while they nap. They can be watched by someone else. You can go to a gym. It can be as simple as a walk. For example, when I hurt my ankle, it was easy for me to just be like, “Oh, I can't exercise. I don't really like it that much anyway.” But you know what? I went to yoga classes and opted out of the positions that hurt my ankle.
There are no excuses for the ones who make stuff happen and are constantly moving forward in their lives. You can make it happen. That is so over said - make it happen - it's super over said, but it’s true. Make it happen. You're in charge. You are an action-taking problem-solving woman and that type of woman ditches excuses.
This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.
Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.
I am always rooting for you, friend!
See ya next time!