Jay Ell Alexander is the owner and CEO of Black Girls RUN!. Black Girls RUN! is an organization aiming to tackle the growing obesity epidemic in the African-American community and provide encouragement and resources to new and veteran runners. Recently she shared the Office of Women’s Health that
Many of us have experienced times in our lives where we’re less active or not active at all. We may exercise every now and then but not as much as we should. And we want to believe there are tricks and quick fixes, but the truth is that starting and maintaining a healthy routine can be hard. I lived it — I know! I have sizes in my closet ranging from 10 to 16 to prove it. But I knew that if I wanted to make a lasting change for a healthier me, I couldn’t get around putting in the effort and overcoming exercise challenges.
Personally, I had a lot of mental barriers about working out. I thought of exercise as “all or nothing,” and I often talked myself out of exercising before I could even get started. I’ve since learned that it’s not necessary for me to spend hours at the gym or force myself to do exercises that feel boring or painful. I learned I could get fit and enjoy the benefits of exercise through activities that I actually enjoy, such as dancing and walking with friends. Some exercise is better than none, and adding exercise to your weekly routine can have a profound effect on your health and well-being. Here are four ways I’ve made exercise a bigger part of my life, and you can, too!
- Confront your exercise excuses.At first, exercising seemed scary, and honestly, I felt a little self-conscious. But I quickly realized that I was not the only person trying to lose weight and become healthier. I started working out alone, choosing to walk during lunch or on the treadmill at the gym. After gaining some confidence, I asked my friends and husband to join me, and we started attending classes together. After a short time, I noticed that exercising was easier than I thought. I already moved every day — all I had to do was move more.