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Get Moving, Girl!

Updated: Apr 26

Get up! Get out! Get moving! 


Movement is a powerful catalyst for improving your overall health, well-being, and happiness. 


The science is clear. If you don't know where to start your wellness journey, start by increasing your physical activity one movement at a time. Moving more is easy, free, and in your direct control, giving you a clear path to improving your health, well-being, and happiness.


Countess studies have shown that physical activity improves your mood, increases your energy, betters your sleep quality, increases your resilience, reduces stress, and enhances your vitality, prompting a more positive outlook. 


Who doesn't want more of that?





Credit: Jacob Lund via Canva Pro

In addition, research shows that physical activity facilitates neuroplasticity which improves cognitive functions and enhances a person’s capacity to respond to new demands with behavioral adaptations (Kirsten Hötting , Brigitte Röder; 2016), helps increase creativity, improves your problem solving skills, and betters your information retention and memory (Cassilhas et al., 2016)important benefits for everyone, but especially for women entrepreneurs.


If that wasn’t enough, studies show that movement helps delay or slow down the progression of neurodegeneration diseases such as Parkinson’s’ disease (Goodwin et al., 2008), Alzheimer’s disease (Brown et al., 2013), and other forms of dementia (Larson et al., 2006).


The benefits of physical activity aren’t only derived from moderate to high-intensity exercising, they can also be achieved with movement.


Movement differs from exercise. 

Movement differs from exercise. 


Physical activity is defined as, “any bodily movement produced by skeletal muscles that results in energy expenditure” (Caspersen et al., 1985).


Exercise is defined as “planned, structured, and repetitive” physical activity aiming for “improvement or maintenance of physical fitness” (Caspersen et al., 1985).


Incorporate a combination of both exercise and movement to your week for maximum benefit.


Exercise

Research shows that active people who exercise regularly experience higher levels of happiness, greater life satisfaction, and self-esteem than inactive people, even after only 4 weeks of exercising (Katarzyna Iwon, et all. 2021)


Developing and sticking to an exercise program helps us create regular daily or weekly goals, and when we keep them, we feel a sense of accomplishment and self-esteem on a regular basis. 


This, on its own, contributes to our happiness and well-being. But there’s more.


Studies have consistently shown that regular physical activity was directly and indirectly associated with self-esteem, concluding that both moderate- and vigorous-intensity physical activity are important for physical and mental health.


Self-esteem, physical health, and mental well-being are essential happiness components.

Self-esteem, physical health, and mental well-being are essential happiness components.


Credit: digitalskillet from Getty Images Signature

In addition, regular exercise helps reduce anxiety, promotes higher-quality sleep, bolsters your overall health, can bring a spark back into your sex life, and boosts your energy. Plus, if you’re exercising with a group or participating in team activities, you can make new friends and benefit from the social aspects as well—which will also contribute to your overall happiness.


According to Dr. Kelly McGonigal, author of The Joy of Movement, via a conversation she had with Mercey Livingston for Cnet, exercise increases endorphins, dopamine, adrenaline, and endocannabinoid—brain chemicals that contribute to feeling happy, confident, less anxious, and even less physical pain.


Of course, most of us know that exercise is good for us and makes us feel better, so why don’t more people stick to a regular exercise routine?


Reasons may include but are not limited to:

  • The motivation for wanting to exercise is not intrinsic, it may feel forced by others, society, and other external forces.

  • There may be negative associations with exercise.

  • The workout is or has become boring or is not enjoyable.

  • There may be a belief that there isn't time to exercise 

  • The reasons for wanting to exercise are not heart- or value-driven.


There is nothing wrong with these reasons. They are just reasons that can cause people to not exercise regularly. To make a change and exercise regularly, we need reasons that intrinsically inspire us.


To make a change and exercise regularly, we need reasons that intrinsically inspire us.

To explore your reasons, consider why you want to exercise regularly. Is it being driven by external factors such as society saying you must, because your doctor said you had to start, or maybe because you want to lose weight?


Dig beyond the first reasons that pop up and look for inspiration to exercise, including:

  • Value-driven reasons

  • How you will feel after a workout

  • What exercising will bring to your person

  • How exercising will enrich your life

  • Improving your body's performance and strength and how that will feel

  • Feeling and being healthier


Even with intrinsically-driven reasons, we can all agree that exercising can sometimes be challenging, especially when you just don't want to go to the gym, a run, or that HIIT class you signed up for.


This is why choosing an exercise routine you love to do and actually enjoy is essential. I know my HIIT class is going to be hard and sometimes I don't want to go, but I'm always glad I went.



Credit: StefanDahl via Canva Pro


If you’re not sure where to start to create an exercise routine for yourself, you may want to try a variety of different workouts and classes to see what brings you the greatest joy. If available in your area, one way to try different workouts t is by using ClassPass. This link gives you 20 bonus credits for a free trial.


My favorite “Get Moving” activities are running, my HIIT class, and hiking.  

In addition, I enjoy biking, paddle boarding, and kayaking. My schedule is as follows: 


  • Tuesdays and Thursdays: HIIT class

  • Wednesdays and Fridays: Running outdoors (3-5 miles)

  • Monday: Walking outdoors (3 - 4 miles)

  • Sunday: Hike, bike, SUP, or kayaking. 


Without a doubt, my workout routine makes me feel fantastic, proud of myself, healthier, more joyous, lighter, more centered, and exhilarated, contributing greatly to my happiness.


Get creative and think outside the gym to find the exercise you love the most. Go have some fun!

Although the gym is often the easiest place to start, get creative and think outside the gym to find the exercise you love the most. Here are some ideas to get your creative juices, adrenaline, and dopamine flowing!


  • Try a new spinning class 

  • Go running with your dog after work 3x a week

  • Get fierce at a kickboxing or regular boxing class



  • Shake those hips like Shakira at a salsa or merengue class

  • Feel exhilarated at HIIT or bootcamp classes

  • Reach for the skies trampolining 

  • Join a roller-skating or roller-blading club

  • Join a rowing crew

  • Be fancy at a ballroom dancing class, sexy at a pole dancing workshop, or exotic at a belly dancing class

  • Engage your core stand-up paddleboarding  

  • Work out your arms kayaking or canoeing

  • Put your legs on notice by going biking 

  • Flip for gymnastics

  • Show your lightning reflexes at a martial arts class

  • Try a rock climbing class

  • Get your tech on with fitness video games

  • Rise up for jumping rope

  • Salute the sun with yoga 

  • Take a pilates class

  • Join a tennis club

  • Build muscle with weight training

  • Start a walking club for your team members and their families and friends

Movement

Movement is physical activity that can be incorporated into your daily routine. While it requires intention, it’s relatively easy to do with a little bit of creativity.


Like with exercising, start by choosing movement that brings you joy. 

Like with exercising, start by choosing movement that brings you joy. 


Examples of movement or physical activity you can incorporate into your day include:

  • Taking a walking break outside after a meeting

  • 5 minutes of stretching before your morning coffee, midday before lunch, or together with the kids when they get home from school

  • Working at a stand-up desk (bonus points for including an under-desk treadmill)

  • Going for a walk while you take your calls

  • Playing a physical game with the dog, kids, or partner (e.g. soccer, catch, hide-and-seek, etc.)

  • Taking the dog for an extra walk 

  • Playing paddleball with your kids or partner in the backyard

  • Taking a spontaneous dancing break

  • Going for a swim or easy bike ride



  • Gardening

  • Building something 

  • Taking a hike…literally! 

  • Challenging your partner, kids, or friends to dance video games

  • Going out dancing with your honey, friends, or by yourself

  • Go apple picking 

  • Having sex

  • Take a walking tour of your city

  • Get a metal detector and scour the park or beaches for lost treasure 

  • Get a ping-pong table for the garage and play with the kids, your partner, friends, neighbors, etc.

  • Volunteer to walk dogs at the local rescue center

  • Get a basketball hoop or tetherball set


What other fun ideas can you think of?


Prioritize yourself and your well-being today

Movement and exercise are both essential to our well-being and happiness. They make us feel good from the inside. To stick to an exercise routine or engage in intentional daily movement, you have to first commit to prioritizing yourself and your well-being. 


Without that commitment, it is too easy to make excuses for not going to your fitness class, the gym, or a run. It’s too easy to put the needs of others before your own health and happiness. And, it’s too easy to forget to workout at all. 


If you don’t exercise now in some way you may thinking, I don’t exercise regularly and I’m doing just fine, thank you very much! That may be true but imagine how much happier, fitter, more productive, and healthier you would be if you did. 


Exercising is not only an essential component of your own happiness, it also impacts your physical, emotional, and mental health, and as a result, your quality of life. 

Exercising is not only an essential component of your own happiness, it also impacts your physical, emotional, and mental health, and as a result, your quality of life. 


You deserve to live your best, happiest, and healthiest life. Do you want to be “just fine” or do you want to feel f*@!ing fantastic, fabulous, and fierce, full of life, vitality, and joy? I’m opting for the latter. How about you?



Credit: kate_sept2004 from Getty Images Signature

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