The Minimalist Workout: Getting Started with Exercise

The Minimalist Workout: Getting Started with Exercise

Of all three physical disciplines, I find exercise the least interesting and hardest to incorporate into my day.

I am not athletic. Life is busy. And there are far more interesting things to do.

So I often skip it.

And yet, I also know that if I don’t exercise, there usually comes a time when I wish I did.

Like when we traveled to China to pick up Anah. Most people around the world rely on public transportation, if not their two legs, to get around.

Needless to say, walking around the Great Wall of China challenged me.

So when our family planned our trip to England last year, I was determined to be ready.

It wasn’t anything big. I just started walking more.

To make it interesting, I use the time to listen to podcasts or audiobooks. That way, I am also learning and growing.

Sometimes, I schedule a phone call while I walk. It makes the time pass much faster, and I get in some good time to connect with friends and family that I wouldn’t otherwise.

Some wellness experts advocate getting 10,000 steps a day. Whether or not there is research that backs this up, making this a goal has helped me have a much more tangible indicator of my movement.

Another thing I have tried to do is to stand while I’m working instead of sitting.

Lest I invest good money in equipment that I don’t use, I rigged up my own standing desk with a couple of boxes under my laptop. This is my low-cost version to build the habit.

Once I have developed the habit, then I can reward myself with a real treadmill desk! (Yes, there are such things!) I’ve heard that with this, you can clock in another 5 miles and burn calories even while you’re working at your desk. Sounds good to me!

These are rather simple and probably not very challenging, but they have been what I have needed simply to get moving.

I have tried workout schedules—cardio, stretching, and strength training and all that—but I really struggle with being consistent. I give up and lose what I had gained. Starting over is no fun.

So I don’t.

That’s not to say I won’t try that again, but for me, sustainable is more important for me at this stage in life. By doing a few simple things, small habits of regular movement, I am feeling better.

They are more naturally woven into my day. I don’t need to change into workout clothes or shower afterwards.

There are many other ways to get yourself moving. For some of us, just getting over the hump of sedentary living is the first step.

At least it’s mine.

I do eventually plan to get back to more challenging workouts. But for now, simply moving more is a good start. It’s better than waiting till I can be consistent.

How do you work in exercise in your day?

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