What does fitness or being in shape mean to you? I see a lot of people who are working out like crazy 5 days a week, pushing their bodies - some of them look pretty good on the outside … yet they’re a wound up tight ball of stress or full of anxiety or worry warts. To me – that’s not being fit. I think fitness encompasses the whole being. I believe being fit is being strong enough to handle the activities you want to do in your life with ease and flexible enough to navigate thru your life peacefully without anxiety. Yes, of course it’s an important part of fitness to work out for a healthy heart and strong muscles and bones – that’s the obvious. What about the person that can bench press 350 pounds , yet can’t lean over to pick up something that has fallen on the floor – because they’re too stiff ?
I do not consider that being fit. What I consider the true meaning of Being Fit goes beyond exercise and includes taking care of your mind body and soul …. It’s about the balance between hard work and relaxation. If you do a hardcore training session for your body – do a soft relaxing stretch. If you work really hard in a therapy session to break thru some demons - give yourself a relaxing meditation. Now, I’m not saying this is easy… keeping a good balance takes motivation, awareness and time. But when you consider the rewards of staying in balance – you’re crazy to not do it.
Why then – are most not in balance? … Perhaps most of us have not really experienced true great balance – we either haven’t had the time, the knowledge or the motivation. So it’s foreign – we don’t even know what we’re missing!
I know for myself - time is an issue. I’m always wanting more time in the day to complete everything I want to accomplish. So how am I going to fit in a meditation? … Or a stretch? … Or even a workout? The solution that has worked for me is to create healthy habits in small chunks – time-wise and information-wise. This way I can fit them into my daily life, without being overwhelmed and having to cut other things out. The benefits I receive usually end up giving me more time in the long run – because when I’m energized, balanced and centered – I’m more focused, productive and peacefully powerful.
"Research studies show that people are more successful when they limit change to only one behavior at a time. I have my clients practice the new behavior for at least a full month before adding another one. If you speed things up by trying out several new behaviors at once, the failure rate rises to almost 100 percent!" says Dr. Tim Moore, Groove Temple's resident wellness expert. "Many of my clients underestimate just how long it will take to change their behavior, while overestimating how hard it will be to change. So take small baby steps to ensure your success." adds Dr. Moore. As the Chinese proverb goes, A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step!
So if you’re doing 3 cardio or weight workouts a week and you’re not stretching – add some stretching – balance it out! In addition, perhaps you’d like to try this … do a different 1 minute quickie around the same time everyday – alternating between stretching and strengthening to keep your balance. Do this for at least 28 days … It takes 21 - 28 days to create a habit. Once that 28 days is complete – if it was a positive experience for you – you’re brain will gravitate towards guiding you to do that particular activity regularly. Add more when you’re ready (and you don’t have to wait for the 28 days to be up – just do a minimum of 1 quickie a day) ENJOY !!!