Support Your Own Resilience With Movement
It’s been said that sitting for long periods of time can be as damaging to your health as being a smoker.
That may sound like an exaggeration. However, sitting for long periods of time without any movement or standing has been linked to obesity and metabolic syndrome — a cluster of symptoms that includes increased blood pressure; high blood sugar; excess body fat around the waist; and abnormal cholesterol levels.
And a new study from the UK found that reducing the amount of time spent sitting is essential to both physical and mental health.
The Critical Need for Movement to Preserve Well-being
One hour of physical movement outside per day was part of the UK government’s health strategy during their first round of lockdowns. Due to working at home or being on furlough, the study found that a greater number of people were spending more than 8 hours sitting at home and reporting detrimental effects to their mental health.
In this study, even the active people getting at least 150 minutes per week of vigorous exercise reported feeling more negative effects on mental health. Researchers concluded that even more movement was needed to counteract the negative effects of inactivity from sheltering in place.
As a health coach, you know how important movement can be to support your client’s physical and mental wellness. And you likely have your own movement routine that keeps you on track with your health goals.
If not, what’s getting in the way of your healthy movement goals?
Prioritizing Movement as Self-Care
Exercise for physical and mental well-being doesn’t need to take hours of each day. You don’t need to participate in triathlons or Iron Man events to stay fit.
It does need to become a consistent habit to be more effective.
How can you fit it into your schedule on a daily basis? What makes the most sense for your unique lifestyle?
If you have an unpredictable schedule juggling work, family, and other responsibilities, you may schedule your movement for specific pockets of time that will work on various days to get some movement into your day. For example, you might have:
- Earlier mornings dedicated to yoga stretching or a home workout
- Midday walk breaks during lunchtime
- Late afternoon or evening outdoor running
In any case, give yourself a break each day in whichever time slot works best for that day.
And on the days when you are too tired to do a really vigorous workout, really give yourself a break! Walking is an excellent way to get movement in without causing extra physical stress on your body.
Removing the Time-Wasting Distractions
When you’re constantly busy, it can be easy to fall into time-wasting habits online.
Smartphone distractions feel like a break. You get a quick dopamine hit from checking your email, looking at social media, or surfing the web. You get an adrenaline rush from scrolling through the latest news headlines.
If you use social media to attract new clients to your health coaching practice, going online might even feel productive.
It’s now well-known that social media is designed to be addictive, and it is also associated with higher levels of anxiety and depression. Those distractions can also keep you sitting still for longer periods of time.
You can remove distractions by blocking your own access to the app that you use the most — or by just shutting your device off completely for specific periods of time.
Taking back your time will give you the room to get more done in less time — and give you back hours that you can use to add more movement into your life.
Be Your Own Coach — or Work With a Health Coach Through MBODY360
As you know, accountability can make all the difference when it comes to changing habits and reaching goals. We’re all human and can sometimes need some help.
Do you need your own coach to help you stay accountable for your own self-care?
You could be your own health coach by assigning yourself a nutrition plan and movement goal through your MBODY360 practitioner portal. Add yourself as your own client, and download the app on your smartphone. Then you can track your food, movement, and any other metrics you want right in the app.
You could also work with your own health coach that uses MBODY360 in their practice. Maybe you can partner up with another coach or trainer to keep each other accountable. They can assign you a plan and movement goal to help you reach your targets. Your coach will be able to monitor your progress from their practitioner portal. And they can nudge you when they see that you need support.
Either way, the MBODY360 app can help you, just like it can help your clients – to stay accountable by being an automated coach in your pocket. The app will gently remind you to keep going. And the more that you use it, the easier it will be to create healthy habits that help you build resiliency and success.