Guest blog writer for Health 2000 June 2020 (https://www.health2000.co.nz/blog/sport-fitness/snack-on-movement)
Exercise doesn't need to be boring or long to improve physical and mental wellbeing. Move your body for just a few mins every day to feel more energized.
Would you like to exercise more but you’re too busy? You’re in good company.
“Too busy" is one of the most common reasons we give for not exercising. It makes sense, you’re a busy person with a to-do list a mile long. With family and work commitments, who has time to get a sweat on for 30 minutes, especially when you add on time to change into sports clothes, travel to and from the gym, do your workout, shower, and change back.
You may not have a spare 30 minutes, but how about two minutes? Do you have two minutes to brush your teeth in the morning? Two minutes to wash your hands before eating? A few minutes while the kettle boils?
If you have two minutes, you have time to exercise and enjoy the benefits of it. New research shows small bursts of movement throughout the day improves cardiovascular fitness and strength and reduces blood pressure and blood sugar levels as effectively as a 30-minute workout.
Better yet, the movement doesn't need to be complicated or intense. You can simply march on the spot for a couple of minutes, step side-to-side, or reach up and down. You don't need to change in to sports clothes. You can snack on movement anywhere, anytime. Even in the office and every little bit adds up.
Imagine the benefits overtime of moving your body for two minutes, twice a day, every day. The same amount of time you spend brushing your teeth.
You’ll find you feel more energised, you’re able to run around the park with the kids. You’ll feel stronger and more confident, you’ll be able to tackle those tasks you always wanted to. Your posture and balance will improve, reducing aches and pains and the likelihood of falls. Your moods and energy levels will feel more stable. You won’t need to reach for a mid-afternoon pick up and you may feel less ‘grr’. Your clothes will fit better. With only a few minutes of movement every day, you will feel happier and healthier.
How about you give it a go by marching on the spot next time you wash your hands?
Here are some of Spring Coaching’s favourite movement snacks:
Hi-fives or fist pumps when things go your way
Calf lifts when waiting for the kettle to boil
Triceps dips off the couch in ad breaks
Squats when brushing your teeth
Taking the stairs rather than the elevator (trust us it's not as cramped and usually faster)
Offering to do the coffee round
Walking to catch up with a colleague or friend rather than email or call
A little shimmy or strut when your favourite song plays
A victory dance when you arrive home.
Josie Askin is a holistic wellness coach, owner of Spring Coaching (www.spring-coaching.com), experienced long-distance runner, pilates teacher, and yogi. Spring Coaching empowers busy people to be happier and healthier through small sustainable steps that lead to lasting change.
Josie’s qualifications and experience in psychology, professional coaching, nutrition, sports training, and pilates enable her to take a holistic view of wellness covering movement, nutrition, and mindset. You are how you move, eat, and think.
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All advice and material provided is for educational and informational purposes only. The information provided is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Spring Coaching assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions in any advice or material provided.