This week I worked to increase the activity level in my days – without causing unnecessary or even necessary discomfort. I just wanted to find a way to move more, without, in all honesty, exercising more. Instead of sitting for hours on end while working, I made a point to get up and stretch every hour. While grocery shopping I parked in the middle of the lot. O.K., I know I could have gone further and parked that car in the last space, but at least a made a small change instead of circling for minutes to find a space next to the door. I played on the floor with my daughter. Took her to the nature park for a walk on the wooded trails and danced with her for minutes at a time.
Many of these things I do regularly, but this week felt like a shift. Because while I’m out of my regular exercise routine –though I intend too start up again Sunday, she says optimistically – I am becoming more conscious of all the ways I can build exercise and energy into my day. Acknowledging what I am doing well – instead of acknowledging the hours I spend on my couch watching what others are doing well in the Olympics – felt better than beating myself up over what I’m not doing. It also helped me become aware of how I am using my body and spending my time during the day. And with that I began to identify the other ways I can use my body.
Case in point: When I poured my daughter’s milk into her cereal this a.m., I also took a couple of extra seconds and did five bicep curls with each arm while holding the milk jug. OK, so the leche lifts won’t replace a regular strength-training workout, but it did make me laugh AND it certainly is a better workout than I get from lifting, oh say, the mug of Vienna Roast I drink every morning. Who knows, maybe I’ll try working my triceps when I open the green beans for dinner. Hmmm. I wonder how much a bottle of wine weighs?