5 Ways to Move Your Body (+ Get Happy) Everyday

Sep 25, 2013 | Exercise

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I thought it had been a wee while since I talked more about Moving  Your Body. Last time I introduce this segment and shared with you my own sordid history with exercise how I have gotten to the point I am at now where I love to move every single day.

When I talk about moving – what I mean is using our bodies, and creating habits and a mindset of natural movement. I totally believe that our bodies were made to move and  when utilise this it does us so much good. Getting your heart rate up and doing some exercise ( what I call the more formal partner of moving) we releases happy endorphins, improves your circulation, gets your bowels going, helps you burn unwanted fat and reminds you that you are one powerful and strong individual. 

So if you are constipated, depressed, lacking in energy, got some extra fat  layers you want to shed or feeling a bit like some sort of useless individual then follow these tips:

5 Way to Move your Body (+ Get Happy) Every day

1. Be mindful. Learn to be aware of how your body moves. Think about your posture – are you locking your knees, hunching your back or always leaning on something and never standing straight? Perhaps you drive to work – think about your posture and making small movements like holding in you pelvic floor muscle (the peeing muscle )  or taking deep breaths. Maybe you commute on a train. Why not choose to stand, and rock back and forth, or walk to the station/bus stop in a way that make you out of breath?
Whatever your day looks like think about how present your body is in that moment. Hanging out with kids can involved sitting on the couch or throwing them in the air and toning your arms. Getting to and from work can be a seemingly waste of time or a chance to engage and strengthen your core muscle and move your body . So grow in your awareness of your body and you suddenly be unstoppable!

2. Stand Don’t Sit.  There has been a a bit of buzz recently about why we should all stand not sit,  and studies done to show this decrease in mortality rate of those individual who more time sitting over those who don’t, regardless of any other activity level (see this paper). Meaning basically that some researchers have come to the conclusion that those who sit down more often die quicker.
Not exactly a cheery thought and perhaps a tad on the dramatic side, but regardless of the current buzz or drama I do think standing is a more natural posture for our bodies. So much so I am currently constructing myself a standing desk so all day long I can be on my feet. I was able to trail this out a few week ago where for a few weeks I worked at my computer mostly on my feet and I totally loved it. My feet ached at the end of the day but no more then when I worked at a hospital running between wards and in terms of my long term back pain it really helped alleviate stiffness and discomfort .
So why not making standing your default posture? Stand on public transport or when on the phone or even construct you own standing desk and you will use 50% more energy than if you had sat on your arse. Using more energy mean you burn more unwanted fat and engage you leg muscles.
So lets all take a stand….

3. Walk. Now you may all groan when you read the word ‘walk’ as you have probably heard tips before like ‘get of the bus a stop earlier and walk or go for walks in your lunch break all of which is brilliant advice. So why not walk more?
Its free, its effective, its natural. Plus you can get very few injuries from a walk.
Also quit with the excuses of I don’t have time or I am too busy – we all have the same hours in the day and we fill them with things important to use. So make your health, your body, your sense of happiness and wellbeing a priority . Walking is the easiest way to do this. (I happily confes to be a weird poer walker swinging my arm enthusiastically or being the only midday walker who hasn’t got a dog…)

4. Love You Tube. May sound weird, but honestly there is a whole host of amazing  exercise resources on it. Sometimes I may have only 10 mins to spare but I can easily search for 10 min pilates routines. You may only have 5 mins to your self or to give initially to getting more active – thats a brilliant place to start so why not You Tube some exercises and find out what you like. Maybe its free running, power walking, tae-bo, martial arts, body building, dancing, balancing, stretching – basically do anything that makes your feel happy and involves moving your body.

5.Be grateful. There is nothing like having times where you are unable to move to make you realise how much of a blessing free movement can be.
I used to work and support a woman with severe cerebral palsy so movement and speech was limited . We had such a laugh together and loads of fun but despite my own bad back pain at the time, it made me realise how blessed I am to move. Maybe you can only run for 2 mins – brilliant celebrate that and aim for 3 mins. Maybe due to health problems walking is you only option (I’ve been there), then be mindful of how amazing it is that our bodies work at all! Fitting exercise into our every day is partly to due with habits and discipline, but also to do with making sure we take part in the act of celebrating our bodies and the power thats within them. It reminds us of our strength and our vulnerability, creating in us healthy bodies and happy minds.

So why not follow these easy tips today and for the rest of this week and see how you feel. Stronger? More powerful? Happier?

Just don’t forget to clench those peeing core muscles!

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