Definition: Maintaining physical activity and movement
One school of thought is that the body was only designed as a mechanic to move the brain around.
Another is that the brain was only designed to control movement (e.g. not emotions/feelings).
Either way, activity is at the core of both philosophies and if either are true, it is not surprising when so many health issues arise when we don’t move.
There are vast numbers of studies demonstrating the positive impacts of movement on resilience and wellbeing, this one summarises a chunk of it in one place. For many though, it is the knowing-doing gap.
That is, we know what to do, we just don’t do it (£37m is spent on unused gym memberships). We know we should go, but we don’t!
How does coaching help?
Many clients do touch on this briefly in at least one session, either in recognising that this is something that supports their energy, however it is never the main thread of discussion.
My theory on how it improves is this:
One of the “excuses” or “reasons” people have for not getting enough exercise, is time. We generally know this is a myth. We can find it if we really want to though.
I believe we are seeing these results because…
- boundaries improve through coaching, so people recognise and prioritise that they CAN allocate time to themselves for physical activity, and with the increased sense of control, you can make a conscious choice to DO something
- sleep improves, and when we sleep better, we have more energy, and so FEEL more like taking part
On seeing the results (increased energy, mood, physical feelings), this becomes more habitual (we want more of those things, and of course the endorphins), and the rewards are reaped (have a listen to this podcast for more on habits).
Oftentimes, we are busy serving others though, and believe to prioritise ourselves would be selfish (see earlier comments!). When we pull all those wellness benefits (from coaching) together, it becomes clear that our levels of activity will increase.
Don’t just take my word for it, here’s what the clients are saying:
“ I have started exercising again properly, I have more energy and I ran over 11 miles last week and have a Personal Trainer. This is the real me again”bluegreen Coaching client
How can you help yourself? Here are a few self-coaching questions
- What will I gain from increasing my activity levels?
- What is your own definition of activity? e.g. not what it “should” be, or others think it is…
- What do I really enjoy doing?
- What is the smallest thing I can do?
- How will I keep myself in check?
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Sheela Hobden is a Coach at bluegreen Coaching. Following her own mental health battles, she now coaches individuals, runs training sessions and speaks at conferences. She has a real passion for helping medics and healthcare professionals take as much care of themselves as they do their patients in whatever life or career conundrums they face! She is also a Mentor Coach and Coach Supervisor. She has a PGCERT in Business and Personal Coaching, holds PCC member status with the ICF and is CIPD qualified. She challenges herself with ultra distance running and Ironman. Find her at www.bluegreencoaching.com or swimming in the sea, in Poole, Dorset
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