The New Year is one of my favorite times of year because it gives me the opportunity to recenter my goals and start fresh after enjoying the Holidaze! However, I have found I am only successful in seeing these goals through if I first dig deep and discover my WHY- my true purpose and intention for choosing certain goals. Your WHY needs to be deeply meaningful and specific to you. It should be something you can revisit throughout the year when you begin losing motivation and need to remind yourself why you wanted to create change in the first place.
For me, incorporating daily movement is always at the top of my list each January. I prioritize a consistent exercise routine not just because it is my profession, but because of the way it makes me feel. Most importantly, exercise makes me feel strong and clears my head. These two benefits keep me coming back for more on the daily! With this in mind, I wanted to share something that really lit a fire under me to write this blog and put into perspective the importance and attainability of seeing your daily fitness goals through in 2021!
With ongoing stay-at-home orders, virtual classes, and work from home becoming the new norm, staying active is not as simple as it once was. It is easy to fall into the habit of sitting for long periods of time working in front of a computer screen, or maybe watching TV if you are lucky enough to have the time to do so. We all know it’s not ideal to be sitting for too long, however, this type of inactivity comes at a higher price than many of us assume or expect. Not moving our bodies actually negatively impacts almost every aspect of our wellbeing: deteriorating our mental health, causing physical health issues like cardiovascular disease, tightness and pain in our musculature/joints, and even shortening our life span. But not to fear! We can counterbalance these negative effects by getting our bodies moving each and every day. And the reassuring news is that the recommended amount of exercise time is not as long as you might expect.
Research has found that just 30 to 40 minutes of exercise every day offsets the harmful effects of sedentary time. That is around just 3% of our waking hours! Aside from improving your physical wellbeing, this amount of exercise has also been found to drastically improve your mental wellbeing and fight depression and anxiety. Not only is this crucial for us as adults, but also for our kids! Keep this in mind and use it as inspiration to get moving with your family! It's more important than ever before to set a healthy example for our kids by committing to a realistic exercise schedule.
Even though the recommended dose of exercise is not very long, the key for many of us is finding the motivation to set this small amount of time aside for ourselves each day. With our busy schedules and general sense of overwhelm daily, there is often a list of tasks that could be prioritized above working out. However, by taking a relatively short amount of time to do something good for your body, you are actually better equipping your mind to face the rest of your tasks!
Let’s stop thinking about exercise as a luxury we earn by getting through our other responsibilities and start thinking of exercise as the necessary tool that allows us to take on the rest of our day with success!
Here are a few tips to help you achieve your realistic daily fitness goals this new year!
Be sensible with the goals you set for yourself! Maybe rather than a 1+ hour workout, you commit to setting aside just 30 minutes a day to take care of YOU! This is an accessible chunk of time that you can carve out by putting the phone down to stop scrolling the gram or getting off the couch or bed bingeing on Netflix!
Set the alarm a few minutes earlier! We all have very busy schedules, and a list of excuses, but it is imperative to take the time to exercise and set ourselves up for success throughout the day. Many of us struggle to find even 30 minutes of downtime, so ensure this time is set aside by creating it and waking up just a little earlier in the morning!
Think about your HEALTH! We are all so hyper-focused on staying healthy during this pandemic (which I think is one good thing coming from all of this) and there is a direct correlation between daily movement and our wellbeing. The benefits of daily exercise and the impact it has on our immune system and ability to fight off disease is profound. Want to stay healthy? GET MOVING!
Try a LEVEL UP Express Class! There are over 25 Express Classes on LEVEL UP Online to choose from! NO excuses! This entire Collection of workout videos on my online platform are between 15-40 minutes! These classes are the perfect solution to quickly and efficiently move your body when you are short on time.
Write it down! Write down your WHY and add 30 minutes of exercise to your daily to-do list. No joke- write it down and check it off each and every day. This is what I do and I swear it keeps me accountable to myself! Keep track of your fitness plan on paper or in the Notes App on your phone so you can look back at all you’ve accomplished when you need a little extra push to keep going!
Find a workout buddy! Another way to find motivation in your workout is leveling up with a workout buddy! I always find working out is more fun when you do it with others and it allows you to hold each other accountable to your fitness goals. Set up a socially distanced hike or walk, or level up virtually with a friend. On the days when you lack the desire or motivation to move- reach out to a friend, or a family member and do it together!
Give it time! Be patient with yourself. Nobody is perfect and there will be times when we slip up, but if you do your best to stay committed and keep showing up for yourself, I promise the results will follow. Before you know it, you will feel so much stronger and better in your body that you won’t want to go a single day without some form of exercise. The endorphins will start to flow and that will be enough to keep you coming back for more!
I hope these suggestions help and inspire you to set realistic fitness goals for 2021 that will level up your overall health and wellness! Let’s make 2021 the year you put yourself higher on your to-do list!
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