Let’s talk about “intentional” movement and how important it is to our health. Wait! Just keep reading. I promise this is not an exercise article. Formal exercise is great, but what we’re talking about here is how to incorporate more movement into your average day.
Did you know that we have a serious problem of inactivity in our culture and it is literally killing us? The World Health Organization has identified physical inactivity as an independent risk factor for chronic disease development and it is now the fourth leading risk factor for death worldwide.
So what holds us back? Maybe it’s that we are not in the best shape anymore, because we’ve accumulated more years, more responsibilities, less time, and maybe more restrictions or physical injuries. Or maybe we just always preferred to come home and get straight to the couch. But now we know how damaging inactivity can be, so just keep moving!
We can move our bodies regardless of where we are. This might be as simple as standing at our computers. Maybe instead of sitting still at our desks, we find ways to stretch and move and wriggle, or put an alert on our phones to stand up every 15 minutes and do a few squats. Maybe we take the stairs instead of the elevator, or take a brisk walk instead of going to the lunch room. Just don’t stop moving.
Think about your last 24 hours. How much time did you commit to intentional movement? Did you know that even if you exercise 30 minutes a day, but sit for the rest, you are not keeping a healthy energy flow throughout your body? Evaluate your physical activity and consider making a plan to incorporate intentional movement to improve your physical fitness. Whatever you do, just keep moving.
The beauty of this life is that we are always moving forward; there is no other direction for us to go. So don’t call it quits or give up on healthy habits or physical activities. Just keep moving. You have an abundance of opportunities to continue to move your body regardless of what physical ailments you may face or what lack of exercise experience you may have. Try not to compare yourself to other people, or to your younger self.
Scheduling short periods of intentional movement throughout the day can clear your head and improve your circulation and emotional well-being. It can help you get in better tune with your own body.
Awareness can be the difference between a healthful life and disease. When we have self awareness, we are more able to recognize trouble in our bodies and to take the steps necessary to heal. So whatever you do, please just keep moving.