At one point or another, we’ve all started with a new year’s goal of “exercising more” or “going to the gym x times per week” and we’ve all probably given it the good ol’ college try and made it through a month or two before slowly falling off the bandwagon. While you may not have made it too far with that goal, it was a good one to have, maybe we just need to rephrase it.

Saying we’re going to “exercise more” or “go to the gym x times per week” has good intentions but I mean, come on, just reading that it sounds like a chore. The intentions were good but we need to start by making the goal sound like something you’ll WANT to do for more than a month before quitting, this is where “movement” comes in. Movement implies doing something, anything, that isn’t sedentary, it doesn’t put itself into the box of just “the gym,” you just want to move. There are endless reasons why we should be moving more, and sitting less but here are two to inspire you into making “Movement” your New Year’s goal.

Improves Your Mood

Movement has been proven time and time again to improve mood, lessen symptoms of anxiety and depression, and even help symptoms of ADHD. The good news is, that you don’t need to be a powerlifter to reap the rewards; movement has been shown to improve mood and lessen symptoms of depression and anxiety with as little as 15 minutes of high-intensity exercise or an hour of low-intensity exercise per day. Not into the gym? Walk outside for an hour (getting outside in the sun also helps our mood!), too busy? Do short bursts of movement throughout the day (even taking the stairs at work or cleaning your house counts)! Every bit of movement adds up!

Helps Prevent and Manage Chronic Health Conditions

Arguably one of the most important reasons for getting up and moving is its impact on our overall health – weight, prevention of disease and management of chronic conditions. For many people with chronic health conditions, or those that want to reach a healthy weight this can be daunting but the benefits far outweigh the struggle it can be to make movement a habit. Movement can help heart health, control weight, manage pain, lower the risk of certain cancers and lower the risk of and help with symptoms of dementia,and that’s just a few! If you have a chronic health condition make sure you talk to your doctor or visit My Physio Sports & Rehab Centre for advice on the right kind of movement for you. With all those benefits to our health, I’d say we better get moving!

Find Movement You Love

Often when we make our goal of “exercising more” we end up limiting ourselves to what everyone else does – head to the gym, or take up running. Instead, give yourself the time to try out and find new ways of moving that you love and want to keep doing – you’re never going to make something a habit if you hate it. Find a gym that offers different types of classes and try them all!