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In short: Do some.
Even a little is helpful. Okay, true, not as helpful as regular full-body workouts, but doing something more days of the week than not is more beneficial than staring at exercise equipment hidden by the ironing or rerouting to avoid driving by that gym you’re paying for but haven’t been to in ages.
Weight loss is 80 percent nutrition, 20 percent EVERYTHING else. Finding your way to stick to the nutrition plan of your choice is significantly more effective than exercise, but exercise can help you stick to the plan because it’s so much more than the weight you lift or the steps or the classes you take. It can feed your heart. Your soul responds, and your neurochemicals get happy. It can give you space to see what your body can do – rather than punishing yourself for what you ate or plan to have afterward. Do you see?
So how do we do that?
Find a way to make it enjoyable and practical; make it fit you. The only exercise I did when I lost my weight in 2012 was to walk my dog. Yes, household and lawn and garden maintenance, but mostly walking.
When audiobooks and podcasts came along, I discovered I could walk for a long time without getting bored or tired. I didn’t realize I liked listening to books, and that opened up a whole new way to motivate myself.
Our local police have a “Dog Walker Watch,” and that allows me to contribute while I’m out on dawn patrol. Maybe move a dozen bricks that fell off a trailer onto the street or find hunks of metal that could puncture a tire or crack a windscreen. Be extra eyes for students waiting for a bus in the dark or catch the horses living on my street when they find a way out of their pasture. Amazing what can happen on a one-mile stretch of busy road before daylight, and I get to help my neighbors. It’s motivating.
As noted last week, some of us thrive on accountability, so build that into your plan. I’m still doing the 10-minute strength training 4 days a week – onto week 3 now. Slowly building my strength a little.
Find what works for you. See what your body can do.