A recent conversation with a client was the most fun I’ve had at work in quite a while. She had set a goal of exercising three to four times a week, which had been a challenge because she had a busy job and was exhausted at the end of the day, when she had chosen to workout. But, she had lost 60 pounds with nutrition changes, and wanted to add in exercise so she could continue to lose weight and tone and strengthen her muscles.
I was a little nervous about her goal because I thought maybe she had bitten off more than she could chew. But, a couple of weeks later, she checked in with great success! I asked her what the trigger was that got her from the couch and up working out. Her answer was so simple and so awesome: I just love how I feel when I do.
She went on to tell me that even when she had a long day at work and was really tired, she exercised because she knew she would feel better right away.
I wanted to clarify this point and make sure I understood exactly what she was saying, so I asked her to confirm what I heard: the results from exercising were immediate, positive, and attainable. Yes, she said. They were.
I was floored. This was fantastic news! Just a few weeks prior, she had been frustrated that her progress had stalled, and she was at a crossroads for what to do. She was confused, because she was still working hard but her body wasn’t changing as much as it was before. She sighed and confessed, “I know, I want instant results. I need to give it time.”
But now she was positively giddy, telling me that exercising made her feel so good right away that she was looking forward to her workouts after a long day at work. It was not possible for her to have a bigger smile on her face.
We are at the half-way point of this crazy year, and a lot feels uncertain and scary. But, we have more control over how we feel than we think. We have access to tools that can help us feel better right away.
Chief among those is the immediate benefit of feeling great through exercise, which my client was enjoying every single day. When the world’s problems seem like more than we can handle, sometimes the best thing we can do is feel better, because feeling better is not overrated. In fact, feeling better makes it easier for us to be part of the solution!
Worried about diabetes? Exercise reduces insulin levels in your blood and improves your insulin sensitivity. That means you and your brain are better able to partner up to notice when you are full and don’t need to keep eating.
Feeling stuck on a project at work? Exercise helps with neurogenesis, which is the creation of new brain cells. A walk and some fresh air can lead to more clarity of thought, productivity, and energy to work.
Exercise is proven to boost our mood to the point where we can alleviate symptoms of clinical depression. Just thirty minutes a few times a week can make a difference. But don’t just stroll around. Work up a good sweat and get your heart and lungs pumping! Get your money’s worth!
Feeling a little low on self-confidence? Battling anxiety? Go and do a strength-training workout or join an exercise class. Exercise can boost self-esteem and improve body image, making you feel like a million bucks. And when you feel good, you look good. More instant benefits! Could this get any better? You betcha.
Not only does exercise immediately make you feel amazing, raise your intellect, and make it easier to eat healthy, it burns calories, which leads to weight loss. Yes! You can even lose weight, on top of feeling great whenever you want to. Oh, and exercise also lowers your blood pressure, enhances sleep quality, reduces cholesterol…should I go on?
My client and I were laughing and cheering over the phone as we marveled in her discovery. Happiness, relaxation, lower stress…it was all attainable within minutes and completely in her control. In fact, the two things that were guaranteed to bring her a lifetime of happiness were two things she had complete control over: what she ate and whether or not she exercised. Instant gratification was sitting right next to her this whole time.
It’s sitting next to you, too. You can join her and feel amazing today. Right now! I hope you will, and that your smile will not be able to get bigger. You deserve to feel great. What are you waiting for?
P.S. If you're looking for daily motivation, I go LIVE in my private, members-only Facebook group every morning at 8:30am to help YOU get each day started on the right foot. Join us in The Good Life!
About This Blog
Each week, I write the "Healthy Heather Blog" in the Tallahassee Democrat. It is republished here in case you are not a subscriber (what???). Sometimes it is really good and other times it is just okay. Thanks for reading it regardless of your opinion!