It’s the #1 resolution people make each New Year.
And…. statistics show that 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail by February.
That may sound gloomy, but fear not! Those stats are the reason we chose movement as our #chronicwellness theme this week. As January draws to a close, we’d like to dive into what it means to ditch the resolutions and join the revolution, starting with movement.
You see it every year: gym memberships spike, only to languish and lapse by week five. Why is that? Well, there are lots of reasons, but one of the main ones is that human beings are resistant to change. Period. But we are especially resistant to change that externally motivated.
What do we mean by that? Consider this picture: It’s late December. Glutted on the extravagances of Thanksgiving and the holidays, we squeeze our bodies into our now restrictive clothing, vowing that when the New Year comes, we will be different.
January 1 is a bit of a wash because, New Year’s Day. But on January 2, we again vow we will be different. Even if there are leftovers.
And we throw ourselves into our new exercise and diet routine. Until we stop throwing.
Why did we stop? Because the focus was on imposing a routine we dislike because of a condition we dislike.
But how different would the outcome be if we switched focus to doing small, steady things we did like, not because we are afraid of chronic illness or unhappy with ourselves, but because we embrace chronic wellness, and choose to honor ourselves?
That's the difference between resolution and revolution.
And that’s why we decided to start one. A revolution, that is. We started with the basics: drinking water, breathing, eating veggies. Now we’re ready to focus all that love on to the #1 resolution, which ends up being the #1 source of guilt when broken: movement.
So what does movement look like in the revolution? It’s natural. It honors the body. It arises organically from your day. It’s practical. Most of all, it’s free from association with guilt.
What’s the pay off? According to licensed massage therapist Lisa Franklin,
“The benefits of movement are numerous. Regular movement can:
When our body is able to move as it should, this is called functional movement. Many people, explains athletic trainer and massage therapist Stacy Ford, experience some kind of dysfunctional movement--a limitation or pain associated with the normal range of motion. This can result from an injury, or even as the byproduct of a sedentary lifestyle.
“If someone has back pain or shoulder limitations or any body pain or limitation, functional movement is looking at the whole person - hips, shoulders, posture, any muscle weaknesses, etc,. to find the why. Why is there pain in the back? Why does the shoulder not move completely? And what corrections can be made to fix it. The dysfunction must be addressed before any strengthening can take place. Otherwise, we would be exacerbating the issue by training the dysfunctional motion with additional weight.”
The bottom line is to move our bodies, to move them often and in the right way, and if we experience some pain or limitation, to seek help in correcting it so that our body can return to reaping the benefits of regular, healthy movement.
And the benefits abound. Besides the ones listed above, Reiki and reflexology practitioner and teacher Tracy McGovern describes it this way:
“It is always true.
It also never ceases to amaze me.
If I am feeling icky or grumpy or overwhelmed or blue.
And if I have the presence of mind, or even if I am coerced by a friend….or more likely my dog.
Just taking a walk or a yoga class (this is usually the friend and not the dog) I feel so much better.
Dramatically better. Sounds almost....revolutionary.
This week we invite you to join the revolution. Stay tuned for tips on movement, fun facts, and inspiration--and don’t forget to share your own stories, ideas, and tips with us by tagging us at #chronicwellness and #cwquakertown.