In times like these it is so easy to feel a constant “low” or lack of motivation and energy to do anything. We are all focusing on work, home-schooling, chores and extra cooking and cleaning. Unfortunately, exercise may not always make the priority list. Finding those 20 minutes for ourselves feels like an added effort. But there’s always that constant pressure to get started somewhere.
Following a simple rule worked best for me: Don’t try to change everything at once. Start simple and achievable, maybe with 20 minutes of walking, dancing with kids, wiping the kitchen floor, climbing up and down the stairs a few times. Stick to those 20 minutes and 2 or 3 of your favorite activities for the first week and you’ll be surprised by positively affects your mood, sleep and food habits.
Think of how great you feel after a super workout or even a brisk walk, and remember that feeling. That euphoric sense you get after a jog is what we all know as “endorphins,” the happiness hormone. This post-workout good feeling isn’t just anecdotal: over the years, research has shown that in addition to physical benefits like promoting longevity and healthy eating, exercise actually does help boost your emotions. It’s been shown to boost energy, improve your relationship with your spouse, help you make better food choices and help your kids see you as a role model.
Where do I start? What’s the right kind of exercise for me? What if I get injured? All of these are fair questions. Know that you do not need an expensive gym or fitness equipment to start your 20-minutes-a-day exercise routine.
Find your choice of activity and commit to the process. Work out with your partner, your kids and make it a ritual. Build that confidence as you take ownership of your health. Throw that scale away, rely on how you feel and track your progress for ongoing motivation.