There’s nothing like parenthood to force you to operate in “good enough” (vs. perfectionist) mode. In that vein, today Jules encourages women to shift their fitness mindset from an all-or-nothing to an all-you-can-do approach, offering tips to get you on the road to strength and good health, and exercises you can do in as little as 10-15 minutes:
“Earlier I posted on how to shape your back, but in hindsight, today’s post really should have come first. The simple basics of getting moving are more important than focusing on any specific body part.
Recently, an acquaintance asked me to be her personal trainer. I’m not a certified personal trainer; but I do have many tools in my tool belt that I have picked up along the way as a collegiate athlete, longtime gym rat, marathon runner, and coach. Even as women burning the candle at both ends, we should be careful not to compromise our own health “feel good” time. Here are a few tips to get you on the road to strength and good health:
1. Make time. If you only have a few minutes a day to get moving, make the most of it. If this means doing squats in your kitchen, do it.
2. Don’t be intimidated. So many women I meet are afraid to go to a gym or to start a program because they are afraid of feeling ostracized or disappointed. Keep in mind that you don’t need to start out by running a marathon. Set small, reasonable goals for yourself and reward yourself when you achieve them. Make sure you find something that you enjoy doing. Someone once said to me, “Every time I run, I feel like passersby are looking at me thinking, ‘Oh that poor woman, she’s DYING out there.’” If you truly feel self conscious, find a different activity. You can always mix it up from day to day. These days, there are things far beyond jogging and biking.
3. Find some friends. Recruit your pals or a loved one to hop on the wagon with you; it always makes it easier to have a friend to support you and motivate you.
4. Most importantly, remember how you feel when you are done. There’s no better feeling than finishing a work out and feeling tired and spent. Your endorphins are in full gear and you’ve worked hard. Consider even writing in a journal about how you feel when you are done so you wont forget the next time you have to tie on those kicks.
And when you’re crunched for time, be satisfied with using what you’ve got. In only 10 or 15 minutes, the exercises below can make a difference:
Although we’ve heard over and over again that somewhere between 30 and 60 minutes of exercise a day is ideal, don’t disregard what just 20 minutes a day can do for you. For many, it’s all we can find time to do. For others, it’s a good start into the world of working out. Take your life into your own hands and be encouraged by remembering that exercise should never be an all-or-nothing approach, but rather an all-you-can-do approach.
* Please be advised to talk to your doctor before beginning any rigorous exercise program. And always, always stretch.”