I think for many writers there is a nasty four-letter word that’s spelled with eight letters: Exercise.
I mean, we usually sit at a desk in front of a computer (like old-fashioned me) or somewhere with a laptop or even cell phone, but usually we sit, and the only parts of our body that really move are just our fingers.
Exercise simply takes precious writing time, especially if you’re scraping out your writing time from work, caring for a family and having other obligations.
So for now, I’ll just say “moving”. Because that’s a form of exercise that doesn’t sound as dangerous, does it?
There are lots of ways to get moving.
Now I’m in the happy position that I can walk to my day job, which takes me roughly 20 minutes each way. That is pretty good, and yet I’m not really in good shape. But if you can add 20 minutes of walking at a good clip to your day, you’ll already get a lot more movement than most writers.
Alternatively, you can get a dog and walk it every day. That’ll give you more than 20 minutes of moving around, but of course, having a dog does take more than just walking it.
I also know authors who use a standing desk, and it helps them to move around more and still write at the same time. Taking this idea a little further, I suppose one could install a treadmill under the standing desk.
I even know a handful of authors who dictate their writing while hiking up a mountain.
By now, I think you’re really shaking your head.
Nope, not your kind of exercise. And you don’t have the time for it, either.
So I have a little suggestion.
In fact, I do this, not as often as I should, but I do it more often than not:
1. Set your computer to remind you every hour on the hour to move around a little.
2. Get up and dance on the spot for a minute or two when it does.
3. Repeat every hour that you’re on the computer.
This will get your heart rate up a little, it’ll make you breathe a little deeper and faster, and that’s all it’s supposed to do. And this will change your metabolism, get your blood flowing and make you feel alive. Plus, maybe it’ll also help to regrow some of those atrophied muscles. (I’m joking!)
And it only takes a minute!
That’s perfectly doable!
And I’m offering a little tapping to help you enjoy these little breaks from sitting and focusing on the screen.
Even though I really hate exercise and I feel so guilty for not exercising, I’m totally okay the way I am, and I now choose to find ways of moving around that fit me and my life-style.
Even though just the word “exercise” can make me feel bad and guilty, and possibly furious, I’m totally okay the way I am, and I give myself permission to find good ways to move around more.
Even though I really hate the social pressure to “exercise”, and I don’t have time for any horrible gym anyway, I’m totally okay, and I now choose to find perfect ways of putting more movement into my day.
What are your feelings about exercise?
Do you have a good routine to move around?
What happened while you were tapping?
And finally – what are you creating right now?
Please share in a comment.
Image Source: F. Moebius
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I have started to do some stretching right after prayer and meditation… I found these 10 minute videos that seem easy to follow through. One day it’s neck stretch, another day it’s lower back stretch so that I don’t feel that I’ll get bored.
I do like your idea of putting a timer every one hour to get up and move etc… similar to putting a timer for 20 minutes …
And then, yes, the dance… just breaking out onto any music style that captures the senses at that moment. Just 5 minutes of enjoying it.
Love your variations! Those are all good to break the work posture and get moving. Our body loves this.