25 Jul Flexibility, Key to success
Flexibility is the key to success.
I read a very interesting article this month about women and physical activity. The article investigates what holds women back from taking regular exercise. Women believe exercise must be vigorous and last between 30 and 60 minutes. The findings in many ways sum up my relationship with exercise over the last few years. Since childhood I have not participated in any team sport, as a result I have had to motivate myself to exercise and keep exercising. I jump into each new plan with both feet, making my exercise plan very rigid as I wish to see results. It could be I am going to run five km five times a week. Or I am going to go to two fitness classes and walk twice a week. For a week or two I am so dedicated to the new plan and if anything gets in the way and I miss a session I feel like a failure. As a Mum of two, a partner, a daughter, a sister, an employee etc, very often my week does not go to plan. So, within a fortnight I have failed and given up. This has been a cycle which has often mirrored my healthy eating plans.
A new way of thinking
However, I have in recent months adopted a new way of thinking of exercise and my body. I am not sure if it is the sudden realisation that I only have a few years left in my thirties, but I have realised that I need to mind myself for myself. I am conscious of time passing and I need to enjoy life, remove the pressure and expectation and enjoy. I now run when I can, sometimes in the morning, sometimes at night. I remind myself every time I finish how much I enjoyed it. If I get asked to join a friend or family member for a walk I go. If I have the kids out for the day we walk and run around and I enjoy it. I acknowledge these activities as exercise and as helping to keep me happy. I don’t count how many activities I fit into the week but when I get an opportunity to get out I go. I really hope that this change of mindset will help me to keep moving for longer and to keep a smile on my face.
We would love to hear what keeps you moving? Is it team sport? The support of a running club?
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Our Sports Science Intern Niamh Pentony wrote a blog last year in relation to World Health Organisation’s guidelines on exercise that you might be interested to read too.