On the Move
By Greg Bach
Scheduling short bursts of movement throughout the day is a creative and effective way for families to squeeze in exercise together during these challenging times at home, says a leading personal trainer.
“Something that I have been implementing in my house is that I have a timer set for 10 minutes to the top of every hour and I get up and my son takes a break from his distance learning and we move,” says Brianna Bernard, Personal Trainer, Nutrition Coach and Isopure Ambassador. “Just making a conscious effort to move throughout the day doing those 10-minute chunks.”
These smaller exercise segments woven into the day can be more manageable – and effective – for family members who often struggle when it comes to blocking out an hour of time for working out.
“I think we all get overwhelmed by the thought of ‘I don’t have 60 minutes to exercise right now,’” Bernard says. “But we all have 10 minutes. So breaking it into smaller chunks has so many benefits.”
Those 10-minute chunks still provide plenty of room for variety, too.
“You can go outside for a walk to get some fresh air and change your scenery,” she says. “Or play a game of tag or take a quick bike ride around the block.”
These days, as stress levels climb and the challenges of staying home mount for many, exercise takes on even greater importance.
“It’s been scientifically proven that even 60 minutes of exercise at the beginning or end of the day is not enough to counteract all of the sitting that we do,” Bernard says. “So we need to be moving more, which I think we are really struggling with as we are quarantined at home.”
JOURNEY TO FITNESS
The year 2014 was a momentous and life-changing one for Bernard.
She lost more than 100 pounds.
“So many times, we start new diets or new workout programs and it’s not working fast enough, and we expect it to be working quicker and we give up too soon,” she says. “I think I came to the realization that I know what it feels like to give up already because I had quit every single time before and I thought about what would happen if this time I didn’t quit.”
Inspired by an article she read detailing a woman losing 130 pounds, she began making small changes in her workout and eating habits.
And big results followed.
“I started working out two days a week and when I got good at two days, I added in a third day,” she says. “It’s kind of this idea of setting your expectations a little bit lower. I think I under promised and over delivered, so I was always successful as opposed to feeling like a failure. So it was about starting small and slowly adding in new things over time.”
To counteract motivation hitting a snag, she relied on scheduling to pull her through those tough patches.
“If it’s not on my calendar then it’s not going to happen,” she says. “If I put working out on my schedule and block off time for it every day then it becomes more significant and it becomes like an important meeting or an important doctor appointment that I can’t miss. It becomes part of my day that has to happen and it’s non-negotiable. So putting it on the calendar is huge in terms of accountability.”
While many people struggle with sticking to exercise regimens because they view it as an unpleasant and even painful process, Bernard’s mindset when it comes to working out is draped in positivity.
And this approach can be used by adults and young athletes alike to stay motivated so their enthusiasm does not waver.
“Working out isn’t a chore – it is something that I am privileged to do every day,” Bernard says. “I get to move my body.”
Flipping that thought process can produce big results – for everyone in the household.
“Not only do we need to shift our mindset,” Bernard says, “but it’s important our kids see us doing that and leading by example so that they grow up and have healthy relationships with food and exercise. Those little people are really watching and absorbing. So even if you can’t do it for yourself we have to shift our minds and think about how it’s affecting our kids and the choices we are making.”
And a good choice to make is using 10-minute chunks of movement throughout the day.
You can follow Brianna Bernard on Instagram and Facebook.
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