I don’t think there’s anything on earth that has been more blown out of proportion and over-complicated than exercise.
People obsess over the form, the type, and the amount of exercise they should be doing. They spend all this time reading books on the topic all while procrastinating the actual task of exercising.
And there’s nothing wrong with learning about exercise. You guys know I love research. I research everything. If you want to read up and be informed about fitness, there’s nothing wrong with that. That’s not what I’m saying.
The problem is when research keeps you from taking action. When you read books instead of working out. When you over-complicate it so much that you never get out of “learning mode” and into “action mode.”
Imma be real and tell you that I spent a lot of time overcomplicating fitness. Like a lot. It has always been a struggle for me. I spent years overthinking it and staying 40-50 pounds overweight. I was overanalyzing it so much that I just stood still and did nothing. I didn’t take any action.
I always envied women who loved exercise and would make it to the gym every single day no matter what. I’m just not that person. I’ve never loved any form of exercise. And even now I’ve got ones that I do that are my favorites, but I still don’t love them. I don’t look forward to doing any form of exercise.
So, I want you to know that I’ve been there. I understand. But in order to change our lives, we’ve got to be action-taking women. Change isn’t just going to happen because we wish it, or we read it in a book. We’ve got to actually do the thing.
When I finally started taking action, I didn’t do anything major. I didn’t go to the gym. I didn’t start running. I just started to move for 10–30 minutes every day. That’s it.
And guess what? I healed my body. I healed my leaky gut syndrome and my adrenal fatigue.
Exercise is a good thing. It’s not my favorite thing, but it’s a good thing. Exercise decreases stress, improves sex (who doesn’t want that???), improves mood, teaches you to love your body, and so much more. Exercise has too many benefits to not do it. And trust me when I say that it doesn’t have to be complicated.
Need a little motivation to get started? I’ve got some journal prompts for you!
To prove it to you, I’ve put together a little list of ideas to inspire you and to help you stop over-thinking fitness and start moving your body. These are things that have worked for me and I know have worked for other people as well.
#1: Decide to Do It
This may seem basic, but if you don’t decide you’re going to do something, you won’t do it. You know you want.
You’ve got to wake up every single day with no excuses. Just get it done. No excuses. Decide you’re going to do some form of exercise, and then be intentional to make your body move every single day.
#2: Take a Walk
Set a timer and take a 20–minute walk around your neighborhood. Or you can even walk around your house. Pace back and forth or walk up and down your stairs while you listen to some music. Pop in your headphones and listen to one of my podcasts. Here’s one I did with my friend, Robin Long from the The Balanced Life, where we talked about food, exercise and perfectionism.
#3: Have a Dance Party with Your Kid(s)
Turn on some loud music and have a living room dance party with your kid(s) while dinner’s cooking on the stove. Even two songs are almost 10 minutes long and dancing is a great for your whole body.
#4: Throw Out the All or Nothing Mentality
Exercising for just 10 minutes is so powerful. 10 minutes is better than no minutes. You can do anything for 10 minutes.
Do arm dips on bar of the tub while your kids are in the bath. Do squats while you’re loading the dishwasher. Do leg raises while you’re watching Netflix.
If you were to do intentional movement for 10 minutes a day, you would see a difference in your mood, you would feel better and more confident, you’d make better food choices. You would notice the change.
The point is to just keep moving throughout the day (and we moms are pretty good at that already, am I right?) Start thinking, “How can I sit less? How can I change?” And then just do whatever you can to move.
#5: Make Movement a Rhythm
Ask yourself where in your day or week you can fit in a new rhythm. For example, every time you listen to the Purpose Show on Wednesdays, take the kids for a long walk.
Decide that you’re going to take a walk in the morning and make it a rhythm. I’m always talking to you guys about the importance of developing rhythms and exercise is a huge one!
Need help finding the time to exercise? I’ve got you, girl. Start with The Time-Blocking Mom Workbook. You budget your money. Start budgeting your time LIKE A BOSS!
#6: Buy Noise-Cancelling Headphones
If you’re a person who gets frustrated by a lot of noise or sibling bickering in the background while you’re trying to get your workout done, get you some noise-cancelling headphones.
Obviously don’t use headphones if you have a baby or little toddler who needs you to pay attention. But if your kids are old enough to be okay with you having headphones in and one of them would know to come and get you if something were to happen, then pop those headphones in. Do your workout, put some music on, and just zone out for a few minutes.
#7: Ditch the Excuses
If it’s winter and it’s freezing, bundle up. If it’s raining, have an inside dance party in the living room. If you’re PMSing, follow a yoga video on YouTube.
You can make excuses for anything and before you know it years have passed and nothing’s changed. So just stop. People who meet goals, the doers out there, they don’t have excuses.
For example, when I hurt my ankle, it would have been easy for me to just be like, “Oh, I can’t exercise. Oh well, I don’t really like it that much anyway.” But you know what? I didn’t. I went to yoga classes and I opted out of the positions that hurt my ankle.
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. You can go for a walk.
There people who make stuff happen and are constantly moving forward in their lives, don’t have excuses. Be like those people.
You can make this happen. You can be fit. You can be healthy. I know, “Make it happen,” is so over-said, but that’s because it’s true. It can be done.
You’re in charge. You’re an action-taking, problem-solving, bad-a** woman and that type of woman knows she has the power to make things happen. So, listen to me, warrior-woman, it’s time to get moving and change your life.