I haven’t always been fit and trim.
Guess which person I am in this family pic from 1987?
I’m not the cute petite gal on the left (that’s my sis). I’m the one on the right with the big hair, completely obscuring my 250 lb, 6’2″ tall dad behind me. I was 180 lbs.
After you’ve picked your jaw up off the floor, read on.
Yes, that was me. I began gaining weight when I hit puberty, and it took a life of it’s own my freshman year of college – 30 pounds in 3 months. That’s 10 pounds a month of weight gain. Damn, dorm food was good, and lots of it.
My self-esteem hit an all time low, and I drank lots and ate even more.
And then something changed my junior year.
I didn’t go on any diets.
I discovered a joy for playing outside – as an adult.
That meant I was moving my body. That’s all it took.
The weight started to drop off without thinking about it just because I found a passion outside – hiking, biking, boating, skiing, climbing…
(It also helped that I met a really cute guy I liked who was really into this stuff too!)
Moving my body is now one of the most important part of my days. And I’m encouraging it to be for you as well.
Your body is made to move. It needs blood to be circulated, muscles to be engaged, lungs to be expanded. When you do this, endorphins are actually released throughout your body. It’s a natural high.
Here’s a secret tip I want you to take on: make exercise one of your top priorities of your day, every day (or almost every day).
I’m not talking big work outs of 2 or 3 hours. It can be as little as 30 min. a day.
Here are my 6 helpful tips for feeling great in your body (it’s also one of the keys to feeling happy):
1. When you make your “to do” list for the day, put yourself at the top in the form of some type of exercise. I don’t care what it is, but your health is worth more than getting all the other “to do’s” done in the world.
2. Move your body doing something that you enjoy or are passionate about. I like working out at the gym less then I like brussel sprouts (which I despise), and I love nature, so I do things outside. What do you enjoy doing? What haven’t you tried that sounds like fun? Here are some suggestions:
- dancing (ballroom, ballet, belly dancing, hip hop, and more)
- water aerobics (my Aunt Madeline loves this – she’s 76!)
- Zumba (she loves this too!)
- yoga (any level – from Restorative to Ashtanga)
- any water sport such as paddle boarding, kayaking, canoeing, etc.)
- a walk in the neighborhood or local trail (it doesn’t have to be a full on work out – walks are great!)
- any kind of sport like tennis, golf, volleyball, etc.
- fill in the blank here of what you can think of _________________________
3. Start where you are. If you believe you need to be at a certain fitness level to start, then you won’t start. Start where you are today, and build from there. It’s a perfect place to begin.
4. When your mind says other things are more important, remember happiness tip #1 (last week’s blog): loving yourself. This is an incredible and important act in loving yourself.
5. Mix it up. I do 3 to 4 different types of activity throughout the week. I hike one day, go to yoga class the next, perhaps bike the next, and a walk the 4th day. This will keep it interesting. Or mix up your locations of where you go to do your activity. But if you know routine will help you stick to doing it, than stick to a routine.
6. Notice if you’ve got excuses – I don’t have time, I don’t have money, I can’t because of the kids, I can’t because of work, etc. I don’t buy it. You have time for whatever you make a priority. Make YOU and your health a priority.
I guarantee you’ll never regret getting exercise. You’ll feel really good inside physically and emotionally, and you’ll love the endorphin after-glow!
Categories: Health & Happiness