“You Broke Your Wing.”
That’s what the young orthopedic doctor said to my husband last week when we returned from X-ray (the grandkids thought that diagnosis was REALLY funny). Luckily, the fall from his bike resulted in a clean fracture to his elbow…not requiring surgery.
For six weeks, there will be no kayaking, dancing, swimming, weights, biking…for him anyway. But, it will affect me, too, because I’m used to doing much of that with my best friend. Poor broken wing!
I probably had “wing” on my mind, shortly after, while watching a social media training video from MeetEdgar*.
Are You Winging It?
In the video, the instructor said, “Do you think the writers and producers of Good Morning America come in a 3AM each morning and say, ‘What shall we talk about today?’ No, of course not, they don’t just “wing it.” To be successful, they plan their segments well in advance.” Of course, she was talking about posting on social media.
But, that comment made me think about YOU. When it comes to boosting our energy and maintaining our health, do you tend to “wing it”? And, how’s that working for you? I’ve found that there are many pieces to the science-based puzzle – and winging it may not be the best approach.
My Commitment to Stop “Winging It”
Hey, I’m guilty, too, of not always having a plan. I used to be very committed to doing resistance exercise (weights). Since our “mailbox” was located a third of a mile away at the Town Center, John and I would take the daily walk after dinner…and stop by the gym, too. We didn’t “wing it”, it was part of our plan…until it wasn’t.
Last year, we moved to a small town three hours away. And, there are no convenient workout places near the house. For a full year, I tried to make it happen, but I wasn’t successful. Winging it wasn’t working. I needed a more realistic plan.
My new plan is to incorporate a very simple, brief weight workout routine into almost every day. Want to join me? It’s simple. Here’s what I’m doing:
- Three times a week (M, W, F) I work on my upper body with three movements. Using my Exertube (resistance exercise tube, see below), my arm exercises include 12 repetitions of bicep curls, tricep overhead extension, and side lateral raises. I usually do two sets of each.
- Three times a week (T, Th, Sat) I focus on my lower body. Again, just three movements. My lower body exercises include: a wall sit (aiming for one-minute hold…but I might need a brief rest), squats, and lunges. So far, I’m just doing one set of these (12 repetitions).
If I miss one workout of each…that’s still twice a week. And, that’s “good enough.” In fact, twice weekly for each body part still meets the recommendation from the American College of Sports Medicine.
I’ve finished week one – and did pretty good (not perfect). But, I’ve found that it’s an easy enough plan to incorporate resistance movement into my day. And, it’s way better than the nothing I was doing before. Something is always better than nothing.
Other Ideas to Start Planning, not Winging It”
If you want more success, start planning instead of winging it. Here are some other ideas. Remember, you don’t need to do them all…just one thing can make a big difference.
- Plan a week’s worth of lunch and dinner menus over the weekend. Shop and then prep your meals so there’s less work during the week.
- Pre-pack some snacks, too, if you’re a snacker. Put them into your purse or briefcase so they’re always there.
- Develop a mantra or theme song to handle tough situations. There was a guy in my audience the other day who told me he had a Spotify play list for every mood – feeling down, sluggish morning, a breakup… Let’s face it, movie producers always include music in their movies, don’t they? Why? Because music can set our mood. Why not use it to our benefit…to make us feel better?
- Plan out your workouts – or what I like to call “movement.” Just because 30-minutes a day of “aerobic movement” is recommended, doesn’t mean you have to do it all at once. Could you walk the dog for 10 minutes in the morning, walk around the building after lunch for 10 minutes, and then bike for 10 minutes after work? That all adds up to 30 minutes.
- Give yourself a bedtime. We do that for our kids so they can get a restful night’s sleep. Turn off the screen an hour or two before your bedtime so you can get the full effects of your body’s natural melatonin secretion (that’s the hormone that makes you feel sleepy). Then, switch to a low-stress/low-light activity such as bedtime paper/magazine reading or stretching. (I play sudoku in a paper book, not in an app).
- Search for a meditation app ahead of time so you have a “go-to” when you can’t get to sleep or when you want to scream. Here’s a list that my friend, Mary Beth, sent me (thanks MB).
What About YOU?
What are YOU going to do (or have already done) to stop “winging” it? Please send me a quick email [email protected] and let me know. I’d love to hear from you.
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