M is for Movement

M is for Movement

Movement imageI was listening to the John Tesh radio show and he mentioned that to be more productive you must follow the 50-10 principle; 50 minutes doing your work and 10 minutes spent on mindless activity.  By allowing your mind to wander for 10 minutes, you will actually be more focused after than if you worked for an entire hour.

In other words, the more energized you are, the more creative and productive you will be too.  If you study successful people, you will see that many are physically active.  They may play sports like tennis for the competitive nature but it is also because the endorphins in their bodies go into high gear.  Once they are finished exercising, many experience that “runner’s high” which leads to more creative thought.   Yoga and dancing can also provide this same feeling and not be as strenuous on the body.  The key thing is to find some activity that moves your body and gets your heart rate up.

I hear all the time from my clients that it is hard to find the time to exercise.  I can relate to that so I take an early morning class at 6 am.  It is difficult at times to get up that early but I feel so refreshed after that it is worth it.  I also have come up with some new and unique ideas on how to manage my business (especially after a really tough workout) and I also tend to sleep better those nights.  If you are not an early bird then try to take an evening class a couple of times a week.  In between classes, walk and stretch for 20 minutes a day.

Schedule walking meetings with your boss, your peers, and/or your subordinates.  Make it a dedicated business practice; maybe have these meetings on days you are not going to the gym.  Considering you can’t take notes, stick to one topic.  This gives you the opportunity to explore a subject more thoroughly and brainstorm new ideas or methods.  Once the meeting is over, you can always jot down some notes or send an email with all the salient details.

Find a workout buddy.  I am always in better shape when I have someone I can count on to work out with.  They may be in better shape than me or vice versa but it is more about motivating each other to keep going than the level of intensity of the workout.  Also think about participating in fundraising walks like the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer (39.3 miles over two days); the sponsoring company usually has training walks and/or will match you up with a training buddy.  This is what happened for me the first time I did the Avon Walk in Boston.  Not only did I have a walking partner to train with but we also now take hot yoga classes together off season.

It takes about eight days to establish a habit so start today by clocking how much time you move daily.  You can certainly buy a FitBit or another type of electronic tracker.  If it works for you, go for it but it has been shown that after six months, most end up in a drawer so it may be better to spend that money on new sneakers, a jump rope, or stretch bands.  Track your progress not in how much weight you lose (muscle is heavier than fat so you may actually gain weight) but in how much time you exercised.  In addition, track how you feel on a scale from 1-10.  If you live a hectic life, you will hopefully see your stress level go down very quickly.  If you are having a bad day or don’t feel like doing anything that is the most important time to get out of your chair and get moving!

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