The Activity Experiment
The third pillar of Shapeshifting is Active Resilience. This is turning physical activity into a way to become more resilient - not just physically but mentally and emotionally. You stop focusing on losing inches and start focusing on increasing strength.
We will look at how you can think differently about activity at another point.
But today we are going to work out what your activity levels are now and think outside the box about how to up those levels. You want to gather some useful data from the prep stage about activity goals to set yourself.
The Activity Audit
Write down what your physical activity is at the moment: pick the last few days and write down:
A Type of activity
B How long you spent each day
C A mark out of 10 for intensity
If you are unsure, just guess.
You are going to do either one or several activity experiments.
The idea with these are to work out
A What is the right activity for you
B How long is right for you to spend each week
C The intensity level that is right for you.
IDEAS FOR ACTIVITY EXPERIMENTS
If you are already active, and enjoy what you do for exercise, then this will be pretty simple.
You probably have a good idea of what the right activity for you is.
The work now is to experiment with extending the time spent on this activity, and how to increase the intensity. How will you measure it?
For example, I at the moment go to the gym 4 or 5 times a week. I do 45 minutes of either work on my arms or a mix of abs and leg machines. But I do not timetable it, nor do I measure the intensity.
Therefore my experiment is to increase each session to an hour, and make sure on every set of reps I do Katie Face. I will also make a note as the next few weeks go on of an increase in the weights that I can manage for the machines.
What On Earth Is Katie Face???
I went to a few classes when I started at my gym with a personal trainer called Katie....and a load of bods about 20 - 30 years my junior. The whole things was way out of my league intensity-wise (plus I had some mobility issues), and I ended on my back for 2 days in pain after a particularly rigorous circuits class.
End of gym classes for Harriet!
However, I learnt a neat trick from that experience. Everything I did in those classes made me grimace like a champion weight lifter, an expression I named Katie Face. So a good way for me to make sure I push myself instead of coast at the gym is to make sure I do Katie Face every set of reps. The endorphin hit I get is a nice little extra on the side!
If your activity levels are non-existant at present - or very low, then you can be quite creative. I want you to try anything that you think you might like. Try a walk. Next day try a speed walk. Do a zumba class. Do a circuits class. At the start a 10 minute walk might be a real triumph. All that matters is you get going!
Clients I have had who are inactive always have big emotional blocks about activity. The only way to demolish these is to get out there and prove to yourself that it is safe to exercise, that nobody is looking at you. Most importantly to give yourself that all-important endorphin hit which will start changing your attitude to being active.