So what is it that I love so much?
I help people understand how important physical activity is to their health and I motivate them to make it a priority. By creating and facilitating classroom-based programs, I'm not spending my days working out - I'm spending them behind a desk, sitting in a chair.
Why am I sharing this with you? Why should you care? It's because I get the struggle, I understand that it can be difficult to drag yourself to the gym...but due to the nature of my job I also understand why activity needs to be a priority more now that it ever has been.
Not because we are getting lazier, but as Bob Dylan sings, "Times, They are a Changin'" In the past 20 years:
- We've become more dependent on cars and public transportation,
- the internet has become a center for information AND shopping,
- there has been a significant change in workplace dynamics - moving employment to more sedentary jobs and less industry and farming-related jobs.
My goal at work and through this blog is to help give you tips to help you change behavior and create opportunities to make healthier choices. It all adds up over time.
Here are a few things I thought might help.
I am sedentary for the majority of my day. I struggle to get steps in, I get caught in projects that sometimes keep me in my chair, hunched over for hours at a time. To counteract that I walk to lunch when I can, I stretch the moment I realize my shoulders are hunched and I keep my waste basket on the other side of my office. These are just a few things I do to create opportunities for movement through the day.
I am addicted to baked goods. So I keep them out of the house. If I get a hankering for brownies I make a batch and then take them to work the next morning to share with my co-workers. When I go to a breakfast meeting that has donuts or scones I eat half and then throw the other half in my almost empty coffee cup so it doesn't sit on a plate, successfully tempting me to eat it.
I am a morning person, which ironically makes it hard for me to workout in the morning. But working out in the afternoon is even worse. I wish I could give you some insight here, but I just suck it up. It's hard to get there, but once I do I never regret it. And I know how important it is for now and for the long run.
My schedule is maxed out. I don't have kids. I don't know what that is like, but I do know that meetings, events, committees and a part-time job fill my off hours. So I adjust. I'm flexible with my workouts and move them to a different day when needed. If friends ask me to meet them for dinner I request a 7:00 meeting so I can squeeze a run or a bike ride in. No one has ever told me no.
I travel a lot. I take a cab to the hotel so I have to walk to the conference/dinner/shopping, etc. I find the best restaurant in town, have a fantastic meal that is a local cuisine and spend the rest of the time having snacks and meals that align with my healthier diet (fruits & veggies, unprocessed foods) and when I can I buy groceries and piece together my own meals - with mini-fridges in most hotels these days, eating breakfast & lunch this way is really pretty easy. I do some squats and push ups each morning and maybe a little yoga, but I no longer pack a bunch of workout gear; I won't use it and then it just makes me feel bad. (PS: I packed running clothes this weekend and did not use them - point demonstrated yet again)