Regular exercise is one of the easiest ways to feel better both physically and mentally. Exercise can help us look better by losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight, and it can decrease the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Physical activity can also help ward off feelings of depression and anxiety, and help you fall asleep easier at night!
Physical Activity Has Many Benefits
The list of benefits associated with exercise is just as long—if not longer—than the list of disadvantages associated with skipping exercise, but millions of women are guilty of being couch potatoes. Don’t think I’m pointing fingers, because I’m not—I’m one of the laziest people I know when it comes to physical activity.
Before getting pregnant in 2008, I was in the best shape of my life. I got to the point that I honestly enjoyed eating salad and fruit, and I walked outside or on my treadmill every single day. For once my seizures were under control, and I felt great.
When I was put on hospital bed rest due to complications with my high-risk pregnancy, I obviously had to quit exercising. I quickly got back into the swing of things after the baby was born because I vainly wanted to lose the weight I had gained, but now that my daughter is pushing two and I work from home, I’m lucky to take a shower each day, let alone exercise.
Easy Ways to Sneak in Exercise
I’m full of excuses as to why I don’t exercise, and I’m willing to bet I’m not alone. If you also find yourself putting your physical fitness on hold, consider the following:
- Walking. Walking is one of the easiest forms of exercise. You can walk around the block, walk laps at an indoor shopping mall, or simply park your car further away than you usually do when you’re at the grocery store. Each short walk will add up!
- Find a class. If you’re unable to walk due to physical pain or other limitations, many local gyms and physical therapy centers offer specialized exercise classes for women with limited mobility. They often include exercises that help restore movement and lessen fatigue. Check with your doctors for more information.
- Remind Yourself that You’re Doing it For You. If you find yourself making excuses, as I always do, remind yourself that you are taking a few minutes out of your day to do something for you. Even if you’re extremely busy with a family and a career, you deserve to feel good and look good. Don’t feel guilty for taking the time to exercise.
- Find a workout partner. It’s often easier to walk or go to the gym if you have a partner that motivates you. Find a friend or relative that is willing to be your workout buddy and get together a few times per week to exercise for thirty minutes. You’ll be able to socialize, and you’ll find yourself looking forward to the get-togethers.
If you are interested in starting a physical fitness routine, speak with your doctors and learn the best plan for your needs. Good luck and best wishes—let everyone know what you’re doing and how it’s working for you!