Recognizing the Necessity of Movement for a Healthy Body, Weight & Self
Movement feels good physically, it keeps your body healthy, and it makes you feel SO much better mentally and emotionally.
Research consistently shows that regular movement is correlated with improved mood, decreased depression, and an overall feeling of peace and well-being.
And, recent studies have found that individuals who have larger size bodies and who engage in consistent movement, are more likely to lose weight and have a greater chance of keeping the weight off.
Why-oh-why then, is it SO hard to get into a movement routine!?!
When did “exercise” become a four-letter word?
At TheHealthyWeighOut, we know how difficult it can be to start a physical movement routine, especially if you are living in a higher weight body. Physical limitations, weight-related fatigue, and past experiences with negative judgments from others in traditional gym settings are all sad realities frequently mentioned by our clients who may desire engaging in a movement or exercise program, but have instead opted to stay home due to feeling uncomfortable or ashamed.
Yet, as seasoned emotional eating and weight management specialists, we know that a movement component is a necessary, essential part of a successful weight loss process and has the added benefit of increasing our clients’ self-confidence and self-esteem, and helps to create a more positive body image in both men and women!
Creating a Non-Judgmental “Body Safe” Movement Experience
With an awareness of just how difficult it is for our larger weight clients to take the vulnerable step toward beginning their movement program, TheHealthyWeighOut team felt it absolutely imperative to set the stage for our clients to have a positive, healing, and encouraging movement experience.
As a result, TheHealthyWeighOut has taken great joy in partnering with a local boutique movement studio that offers both personal training and physical therapy, where our clients can train in a quiet, semi-private space with our esteemed Movement Specialist, Terri Hay. Located less than one mile from our treatment center, clients are able to safely become reacquainted with their bodies — and to engage in movement that is enjoyable, creative, and fun!
When did “exercise” become a four-letter word? (Part II!)
Yet another barrier that we at TheHealthyweighOut recognized was stopping our clients from engaging in a healthy movement routine is the fact that exercise may have come to be viewed as a negative, aversive experience due to a multitude of past experiences.
Sometimes clients come in having had an excessive past relationship with exercise. They were compulsive or driven by the desire to lose weight too quickly and they “burned out” on exercise as a result. Other times, clients report having had past experiences with overly aggressive trainers or gyms that pushed them too hard, leading to chronically sore muscles, fatigue, or injury. Sometimes, clients tell us that they are “bored” by the redundancy of typical exercise routines and would rather do anything but walk one more mile on the dreaded treadmill!
At TheHealthyWeighOut, we wholeheartedly believe that when the Physical movement component of your 3-pronged approach to successful weight loss is approached in a manner that is enjoyable, interesting, creative, and respectful of your current physical abilities and health, individuals are able to engage in consistent movement that supports successful achievement of your weight loss goals, and helps you to sustain that weight loss for life!
Intuitive Movement: TheHealthyWeighOut’s Creative, Enjoyable, & Balanced Approach to Physical Activity
TheHealthyWeighOut is proud to embrace an innovative, creative approach to physical activity that we developed to help our clients move past their barriers to exercise, and to help them come to love healthy MOVEMENT once again!
We call our creative, enjoyable approach to physical activity, “Intuitive Movement.”
What is “Intuitive Movement?”
Intuitive movement is engaging in physical activity that meets your body’s physical needs and, therefore, is experienced as enjoyable. Rather than “telling yourself” you “have” to do a certain activity, intuitive movers ask themselves, “What do I feel like doing today?” This might be walking around the park on a beautiful Tuesday, and running around the block on a Friday. It might be training hard in the studio to get out stress on a Wednesday, and taking a walk with a dear friend on a Thursday.
Similar to “Intuitive Eating,” which encourages people to eat foods that are both nutritious and enjoyable, intuitive movement is based on the principles of engaging in movement that is both good for you and enjoyable!
Examples of Intuitive Movement may include:
- Walking around a park with your kids as they ride their bikes
- Dancing to music that you enjoy
- Hiking in the mountains during the spring
- Running alongside your dog at sunset
Rather than rigidly focusing on the number of calories burned, heartbeats per minute, or average speed run, intuitive movers seek out physical activities that help them to feel strong, confident, and proud of their bodies. Furthermore, intuitive movers allow their bodies to rest, especially on days when they don’t feel physically well.
Even more “traditional” aerobic gym activity can be “intuitive” if it is done in response to your body’s own personal needs and signals. Examples of this may include:
- Riding a stationary bike to release stress
- Walking fast on a treadmill to train for a personal goal of jogging in a 5k event
- Engaging in strength training because it makes you feel strong and builds your confidence
Research consistently shows that when people establish an Intuitive Movement routine which, by definition, is moderate, flexible, and enjoyable, they are far more likely to maintain a long-term commitment to physical activity and to achieve healthy sustainable weight loss!
Our Compassionate Health Fitness Specialist
TheHealthyWeighOut’s empathetic Intuitive Movement specialist, Terri Hay, loves to (gently!) re-introduce our clients to physical activity that is creative, effective, and fun using our “Intuitive Movement” approach!
If you are hesitant to start making the changes you want because of past experiences with exercise that were negative, come give our Intuitive Movement approach a try. We guarantee you will walk away with a smile on your face, and a body that has enjoyed moving!