What is your first gut reaction when I say the word exercise? Do you get excited and want to put on your sneakers? Or do you cringe and want to pull yourself into the couch cushions? Our relationship with exercise can make or break our drive to get off the couch and move. The first step in changing your relationship with exercise is understanding the importance of exercise. Let's first discuss the benefits of exercise.
Why should you exercise?
Reduces symptoms of Parkinson's Disease
Reduces the risk of heart disease.
Reduces the risk of developing a disease, including diabetes, heart disease, and many cancers.
Reduce high blood pressure.
Reduces feelings of depression and anxiety.
Helps control weight.
Helps build and maintain healthy bones, muscles, and joints.
Decreases your fall risk
Knowing how exercise can improve your health can be a great motivator to get you off the couch. Here are some other great tips to motivate a change in your relationship with exercise.
Change your perspective
Exercise should be empowering and leave you with feelings of strength and joy. If you are leaving your exercise routine feeling tired and irritable, you are doing the wrong things! Exercise is NOT your punishment. View exercise as your happy pill. Exercise will bring energy and vitality to your life. It's like filling your gas tank. There are so many ways to get your body moving. You do not have to suffer through an exercise program. Try something new. You can try yoga, Tai Chi, or a fun dance class. Do not feel pressured into doing something you dread because it's the fad. Start changing your relationship with exercise by taking away the "I should's." Remove the pressure and guilt that come with those words. Exchange "I should" with "I will," or "I can." Exercise should empower you, not make you feel guilty if you miss a session.
Exercise with a Friend
Having someone by your side can keep you accountable. Having a friend to sweat with makes your time more enjoyable. You should never feel guilted into exercise, but being accountable to someone else can push you off your couch and out of your comfort zone. Make sure your friend is someone that uplifts and encourages you! There is nothing worse than working out with a Debbie Downer. Find people that raise your spirits and lift your energy!
Modify for YOU.
Not everyone is meant to exercise the same way. It is important to find exercises that work for your body and your lifestyle. Sometimes we have to improvise our exercise regimen to fit in our current lifestyle situation. And that is okay! Pushing through an exercise that does not feel right is a sure way to cause injury or add stress to your day. An injury will put you out of exercise for a few days up to a few months. Wellness 360 offers exercise programs designed with modifications needed for disease management. Starting an exercise program with a physical therapist is a great way to learn modifications for your body type. This will ensure injury-free success with your workouts.
Put it on your schedule.
Too often, we run out of time for ourselves. It is easy to push exercise aside for a deadline at work. What would happen if your car runs out of gas? Silly question, right? Well, our bodies work the same way. If you push your body to the limit with chronic stress, the illness will happen. You need to take care of yourself. The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes of exercise per week. That is only 30 minutes a day for five days. That is less than 2% of your day. I think you can devote 2% of your schedule to your health. Write it in pen on your schedule, no way to erase it! You deserve it!
Balance it out
Exercise should provide balance to your life. It is excellent if you enjoy going for a long walk or a hike. Make sure you are adding all of the pillars of exercise to your program. Your program should include flexibility, strengthening, balance, and cardiovascular training. There are multiple ways to get these elements into your daily routine. Yoga is a great way to add numerous pillars into one workout. It includes balance, flexibility, and strength. Need help setting up a program? Let us know!
Wellness 360 believes that exercise is medicine when prescribed correctly. All of our programs are designed and led by physical therapists. We offer exercise programs for all levels of fitness. If you are looking to start an exercise program, check out our online wellness programs with a 2-week free trial. You can check it out at https://www.wellness360fitness.com/wellness-plus