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How to Improve Your Consistency in Physical Activity

Hi Friend,

Today I want to clear up the notion that diet culture owns exercise. It does NOT. Your body was made to be physically active and craves to move. Physical activity helps to improve mental health, boost energy, and encourages a better night's rest.

Before I breakdown some easy tips on how to incorporate physical activity into your regular routine, I do want to note that there is a time and place for physical activity. If you are actively recovering from an eating disorder then there is a very good chance now is not a good season for you to engage in physical activity until you are medically stable and weight is restored.

If you are medically cleared by your healthcare team to engage in physical activity, then keep scrolling for some tips on how to reclaim physical activity as a pillar to health, rather than a way to solely burn calories.

Incorporate Variety

The thin narrative our society solicits deems cardio as the number one way to change body composition. While cardio is one great form of exercise, it is not the only form of exercise. It is important to incorporate other forms of activity into your routine to cross-train which can help prevent injury. If you are a woman, weight-bearing exercise is also very important to help strengthen your bones prior to menopause, where lower levels of estrogen can lead to osteoporosis.

Be Creative

Getting adequate movement does not have to take place in a gym. It can happen in your kitchen, in your neighborhood, or even at your desk while working. Asking a friend out to coffee and taking your drinks to the sidewalk for a walkabout is a great way to increase movement. If you are very busy, you can also focus on splitting up movement into chunks throughout the day. Do 15-minutes in the morning and 15-minutes on your lunch break or while your kid is practicing sports. Make family days active by finding a new trail to explore or a new park to commandeer.

Pick Movement you Enjoy

Diet culture proclaims that the exercise you engage in has to be overly strenuous in order to "count." In reality, any movement is better than no movement. Therefore, picking an activity you look forward to doing, or that feels good to your body, increases the likelihood that you will do that movement more consistently. Find something to do that you get excited about and start there. Pilates 4-5x/week instead of Crossfit once every 2 weeks is much more beneficial.

Above all, I want you to remember that exercise is not punishment and it is not solely about calorie burn. It is giving your body a stress outlet, it is a tool to help improve your mood, and a powerful way to improve your energy and prevent disease.

So, what movement are you going to incorporate this week?!

Heaps of blessings,

Mikyah, RDN, LD, CD


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