There’s sweating, twisting, bending and pushing.
And then there’s what you do after you pull on your yoga pants.
According to a 2013 study, the Center for Disease Control suggests that 80% of us don’t get the recommended amount of exercise:
“The U.S. government recommends adults get at least 2.5 hours of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise each week or one hour and 15 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity, or a combination of both. Adults should also engage in muscle-strengthening activities like lifting weights or doing push-ups at least twice per week.”
Wow. That’s a whole lot of crap I haven’t been doing.
I mean, if we include lifting my fork to my mouth or baking gluten-free lasagnas, I have that stuff down pat. Binge watching The Flash season 1 on Netflix? Yeehaw! I might have even earned a gold medal in the ways to eat a can of pie cherries that aren’t as bad as they sound at first.
Of course, when you’re an overweight person like me, taking out the garbage feels like a muscle strengthening activity (it’s sure an exercise in nostril constitution). Add a few loads of laundry, and I’m training for the triathlon (well, at least the try-at-the-pairing-of-odd-socks-alon).
As I sit here at my comfortable laptop with a cup of coffee at my side, it’s pretty apparent that my work is largely computer based. I can’t exactly do jumping jacks while I’m trying to formulate marketing copy. It’s not like I can strike a downward dog while editing.
At the same time, I know that’s really B.S. I know I could just as easily be standing while working, taking frequent walks or finding some reason to get on my feet (hey, remember my treadmill desk? ). Then there are the requisite trips to the bathroom, thanks to that cup of java at my side.
As cliche as it sounds, weight loss and fitness come more slowly as metabolisms begin winding down after those childbearing years. Naps become a new, celebrated past time, rivaled only by the latest Netflix binge watching session of iZombie or Extreme Homes (both featuring preternaturally clever people whose universes I want to inhabit).
And then there’s Betty White, the spry, wizened comedic wonder woman. In an interview with Access Hollywood in 2010, she said stairs help keep her fit. “I have a two story house and a bad memory!” she jokes. “I’m up and down those stairs all the time. ‘What did I come up here for again?'”
So I’ve been taking some strides (no pun intended) to get some meaningful activity in. I’m not a huge fan of movement for exercise sake, but when it comes to losing this weight, sometimes it takes more than exercising the right to free speech to lose a little junk in the trunk.
It definitely takes more than putting down the can of pie cherries.
Movement is important, even with weight loss. It keeps your body moving optimally, and that’s something you’re going to notice in a couple of decades. What’s the point of losing weight if everything’s atrophied from lack of use? Just as your brain needs to be worked, so do those glistening muscles.
Besides, no one needs to get their arm flaps caught in the escalator. Like the last time.
A goal I’m setting, then, involves making exercise less ridiculously annoying by creating opportunities to do things that just happen to involve activity. I’ll talk more about this as I keep posting, but for now it’s enough to say that my fitness tracker assures me I’m making some progress, even if it involves running to the mailbox and parking farther from the store.
It’s also hard to trip and nearly kill yourself on the flesh eating escalator when you’re taking the stairs. But you knew that.