We kicked off the month of May with our manifesto for movement, to inspire you to move more.
Now I want to take it up a notch and announce our 4-Workouts-a-Week Challenge. Our Clean Team is doing it and I’d love for you to join us.
Commit to doing four workouts a week in whatever forms best fit you. For some that’s yoga or jogging, for others that’s weight training or ultimate frisbee. The type of workout matters less than the fact that you actually do it.
I also recommend that you do at least two different types of workouts each week. Here are a few examples:
- 3 days of yoga, 1 day of strength training
- 1 spin class, 1 yoga class, 1 Crossfit session, 1 bike ride
- 1 hike, 1 long walk, 2 days of weight training
- 3 days of strength training, 1 day of muscle release
You get the picture. Variety and change keep our bodies nimble, prevent injury, and reduce burnout. Are you ready to join me and my team?
6 Tips for More Movement
Here are 6 tips to help you during and after the Challenge.
#1 Add workouts to your calendar
I know it’s simple but it’s just too easy not to move for long periods of time, especially if we have a desk job or commute long distances to work. Increase the probability that you will follow through by adding your workouts to your calendar and turn on your notifications.
#2 Change positions while you work
Today there’s a lot of talk about the health consequences of sitting and the benefits of standing desks. Numerous studies show that sitting for for an extended time is unhealthy. And while standing desks are great (we use them at the Clean office), they can also create problems. For example, standing for much of the day can cause lower back and foot issues. It’s also easy to start hunching and sitting into your hip.
The key is to change positions frequently throughout the day. Refrain from remaining in any one position for too long. It causes tension, tightness, and soreness. Even while sleeping, our body is shifting and moving.
Throughout the day, sit, stand, stand with one leg up on a chair, kneel, walk, and do some quick exercises.
If you are using a standing desk, turn your toes slightly inward, press into the balls of your feet and engage your core. This will create good posture and keep you present. When you notice you’re slouching, bring yourself back to this position. When you’re too tired to do this, it’s time to change positions.
#3 Look for opportunities to move more
I was talking to expert trainer Tanner Martty, founder of 34° North Gym in Santa Monica and he mentioned the importance of incorporating more movement into our errands and daily life.
For example, he recommends the classic “park at the back of the parking lot” so you need to walk farther. He takes stairs instead of elevators, carries his luggage instead of using a roller bag, walks or bikes to do errands when possible, and uses a standing desk.
I asked him if these really could improve someone’s health. He said, “Absolutely. If you are doing your weekly workouts, especially strength training, adding in small movements throughout the day may be all the extra cardio you need.”
#4 Do short bursts of exercise
When you’re taking a break at work, changing from one task to another, or need to get the creativity working, try short bursts of exercise. The options are endless, the key is changing your mindset to seek out movement throughout the day. Here are a few of our favorites:
- Keep a yoga mat nearby, get down and do some planks or pushups for a few minutes.
- Keep a kettlebell or a dumbbell by your desk and do a few swings or lifts throughout the day.
- Add a pullup bar to your home or office and do a few pull ups each time you pass through the doorway.
- Take a brisk walk between meetings to clear your head and prepare for the next task.
#5 Power up your TV time
Watching TV is a great opportunity to get in some movement. Watch your favorite show while jumping on a mini trampoline or even doing a few jumping jacks. Make it a game by doing a few exercises during commercials. Squeeze a small rubber ball to increase hand strength and grip. Tighten and release your abs a few times. From your couch, sit then stand ten times in a row, another way to get your quads working and heart rate up.
On the other end of the spectrum, watching TV is great for muscle release work. Release your leg and calf muscles with a foam roller.
Work through your hips and glutes with an Orb massage ball to get some deep tissue massage.
#6 Get a personal trainer
There is nothing like having a good personal trainer to get you closer to your fitness and health goals. If you’ve been having trouble getting started, think about hiring a trainer for a month. They can give you the skills and the initial increase in your fitness to boost your confidence to do it on your own.
4-Workouts-a-Week Challenge Giveaway
Our team is revved up and ready to go. Remember, four workouts a week, at least two different types.
Are you ready to join us?