You’re going to want to stay healthy while you’re in self-isolation, and there are few better ways than dancing by yourself (Thanks, Billy Idol and Gen X; affiliate link). Find some good music and break out those dance moves. You can even dance like no one is watching… because no one is, and if they are, they shouldn’t be because your self-isolating! People need to respect that. Dancing increases the endorphins and improves the immune-stress response. You’ll feel good, and you’ll really be able to cut footloose (Thanks, Kevin Bacon and Kenny Loggins; affiliate link).Continue reading Stay the F— Home: Activity #2 Aerobicize, Everyone!
Most people find excuses to not exercise. We need to find excuses to exercise. Since we’re creative, we can do it. Put your creativity to work for you and get your health in the right place so you can create more, create longer, and create better.
Like your creative activities, you have to make time to exercise. If you think you don’t have time, you will never have time. There are so many responsibilities pulling you in so many directions; it’s easy to ignore exercise even as your health deteriorates. Set aside 30 minutes every day to do something good for you, your life, and your craft.
Find a Partner
One of the best things you can do is find a partner who is able to motivate you to exercise. External motivation may not be the best motivation, but if it gets you started and drags you through those times when you’d rather be working on the computer, then take it. We all have family members or friends we need to spend time with. If it’s your children, find activities that encourage movement together. Your significant other could also be motivating. A good friend might do the trick to. If you know you need to spend time with someone choose events and activities that will encourage both of you to be healthy.
Find a Reason
Use your creative works to help improve your mindset toward exercise. If you’re a writer, this can be as easy as really wanting to know what basic training is like, or trying to describe fighting styles, or just harnessing the feelings involved in a certain activity that corresponds to your writing’s settings. It’s hard to write about the woods if you’ve never been in them.
Find an Exercise You Like
You can choose any exercise in the world. There will be people in your area that engage in the activity, and they are probably looking for others to join them.
- Kickball: Adult kickball leagues range from competitive to beer. This was one of the most fun activities I engaged in when I lived in Alaska.
- Basketball: I started playing basketball in Germany and continued through college and into my mid-thirties. At 5’ 4” with a bad knee, I’m not your typical player, but I enjoyed it.
- Disc Golf or Frisbee Golf: Frisbee golf is easy. You just need to get a frisbee and find something to throw it at. In college, we used light posts and trees as our goals. Disc golf is a little more serious with courses and specialized throwing discs.
- Fencing: Swords? Yes, please.
- Geocaching: Hiking with a destination. High-tech treasure hunting. Get your GPS and get out to find something or just sign your name.
- Tai Chi: It’s a martial art. It’s slow. It’s easy to motivate me to do Tai Chi.
- Instinctive Archery: Breathing, stance, and getting in touch with your inner self are all part of the experience. Plus, over the course of an hour, you’ll pull a lot of weight, even with a light bow.
- Yoga: For me, yoga isn’t that exciting, but it’s something my wife loves. Then I found Cosmic Kids Yoga: storytelling inspired by Disney, Star Wars and more with yoga moves. They make yoga fun.
- Ballroom and Swing Dancing: Find a group and go. If you’re alone and you’re a guy, don’t worry; there are usually a lot of women willing to dance with a partner they don’t know. Of course, women also dance with each other when no guys are present. Either way, dancing is a good way to work up a sweat. Swing and ballroom dancing just help you look cool doing it.
- Children’s games: Just because you’re grown up doesn’t mean you can’t play like children do.
When you choose an activity, give it two or three weeks and go at least three times each week. You won’t be good the first couple of times. That’s okay. You’re not supposed to be good at anything the first time. Don’t just do exercise on the weekends. That’s a good way to get injured more easily. Of course, you can always choose more than one activity and you might have your own. It took a couple of weeks before I came up with the idea for looking for videos on Disney Yoga. If you have suggestions for motivating and fun exercises, put them in the comments.
Realize the Benefits
If you know the benefits of exercise and keep them in the forefront of your mind, you’re less likely to skip them. If you want to live longer, better and be healthier, so you can create more and create better while being a part of your friends’ and family’s lives, exercise should be on your list of daily activities.
Have Health Insurance
My lack of health insurance stopped me from playing basketball. I can’t afford to break a leg, blow out a knee or rupture an Achille’s tendon. Having health insurance removes that excuse. It allows you to continue to get the long-term benefits of exercising while mitigating the fear of what could happen if something were to go wrong. I could get hurt walking down the street or going down the stairs, but removing basketball from my exercise regime also limited the possibility of experiencing a catastrophic injury. (And removed one of the places where I was able to socialize.)
Get a Dog
If you’re lucky enough to have space for a pet and live somewhere you can have one, get a medium sized or larger dog, even if you’re more of a cat person. Dogs require you to walk them and play with them. If you take care of your dog in the right way, you’ll also be taking care of yourself. Just be sure that you understand what kind of commitment your making, then go for a walk with your dog for your health.
As always, consult with a physician before you start a new exercise program. If you’re not convinced as to the benefits of exercise, yet, check out “The Secrets to Creativity: Exercise.” For more on creativity, order “Disneyland Is Creativity: 25 Tips for Becoming More Creative.” Get “Penguinate! Essays and Short Stories: Improving Your Creativity for a Better Life and World.” Preorder “The Haunted Mansion Is Creativity.”
No matter how many benefits there are or how many good things come from exercise – longer life, better quality of life, stress relief, better health, improved ability to move, less heart disease, better breathing, more energy, and better thinking are just some of them – people are still unable to make the time for even a small amount of exercise every day. It’s gotten so bad that someone recommended losing the remote to the TV, so you would have to get up to change the channel. (Of course, television manufacturers responded by making televisions that won’t work without a remote.)
Not only does exercise give you all of the above-mentioned benefits, it also makes you a better creator. Living longer means you’ll get to create longer as you age. Better thinking means you’ll also be able to think creatively better because they are, in essence the same thing. More energy allows you to create longer during a specific day. Better health means you’ll be able to create during days when you may have otherwise been ill.
If this were all that exercise did, there would be plenty of motivation to get moving. However, Wendy Suzuki in “Quartz” magazine suggests that there is evidence that exercise improves people’s abilities to imagine new situations. Scientific evidence shows that walking and other exercise is good for becoming more creative. Henry David Thoreau is one creator who used exercise to overcome blocks. So, get out, get moving and enjoy your new-found vigor and creativity.
For more about a great exercise secret, become a Penguinator on Patreon and read about how my wife and I found a great yoga program that we both like. Get discounts at our tables at Lilac City Comicon, City Cakes and Café, Ogden UnCon and Amazing Las Vegas Comic Con.
Want to learn more about becoming more creative? Get “Disneyland Is Creativity: 25 Tips for Becoming More Creative.” Order “Penguinate! Essays and Short Stories: Improve Your Creativity for a Better Life and World.” Preorder “The Haunted Mansion Is Creativity.”