Over the course of the fall and winter, I went through a lot of rough days that resulted in not leaving my room or not eating enough if at all. As a result of this, my health fell by the wayside. Spring came around and I noticed all the effects of my depression and promised myself that I’d work harder at keeping my health in tip-top shape. Throughout this entire summer, I’ve been working to find ways to keep up my health in small ways that I’ll still feel motivated to do on my bad days.
First things first, I love a good walk. I love feeling the sunshine on my face and the wind on my skin. It’s also a really simple way to keep myself active throughout the day. Thanks to the tininess of D.C. and the fact that most of where I need to go is in close proximity to my campus, I pretty much walk everywhere whether it’s to work, to the metro station, Target, or the beauty supply store. Take some time out of your day to go for a nice stroll or replace a quick Lyft ride with a walk. Also, skip the elevator and take the stairs. You’ll only hate for the moments you’re on the stairs and right after, I promise.
Find Something You REALLY Love to Do
Whether you’re super into a sport, running, or cycling, it’s really beneficial to find something active that you really enjoy. So far I’ve really liked yoga and I’m looking into getting back into taekwondo in the fall. If you’re in college, look into your school’s intramural teams and get involved as a way to stay active.
Workout with a Buddy
It’s always smart to have an accountability partner to keep you on track. My personal accountability partner is my bullet journal, which I use to track my daily habits. It does a pretty good job of dragging me when I see I haven’t kept up with certain habits like exercise or reading. When the fall starts, I’ll have my friends and linesisters to workout with so I’m excited to have a buddy in the gym!
Download an App
If you’re looking for something you can do on your own time, at your own speed, and by yourself, then downloading an app may be a great option for you. I personally like to use the Nike Training App because it comes with a lot of great workouts and you can even filter them to fit exactly what you want to do. Whether you want something with or without equipment, time-based or rep-based, and of course, high intensity or low intensity, the Nike Training App has a lot of carefully planned workouts for you to try out every day. Bonus: they have plenty of workouts created by athletes such as Simone Biles, Allyson Felix, Kyrie Irving, and more. There’s even a Serena Williams & Kevin Hart workout in the app!
Small Workouts for Daily Habits
For the days that I’m especially out of it, I try to stay active by making sure I do small workouts throughout the day to make sure I’m at least doing something. For example, I’ve been doing 25 squats for every trip to the bathroom, 15 calf raises every time I drink something, and 10 up-downs every time I check a certain someone’s social media (lol). Figure out what works for you an start incorporating small workouts that can be done throughout the day so that you’re still keeping your body active even on the days when you only get out of bed to use the bathroom.
Join a Class
I recently took a barre class with SideBarreDC (a black women-owned high-intensity and low-impact pop-up studio in DC & MD) and I absolutely loved it. I woke up super sore the next day and it felt good to know that I had worked my entire body surrounded by black women and good music. There are a lot of workout classes that you can join, whether it’s barre, yoga, cycling, boxing, martial arts, etc. These classes are a great way to not only keep yourself on track and make sure you’re doing things right (with the help of an instructor), this is also a great way to bond with your friends or make new ones.
These are just a few small ways to stay active throughout the day, especially as things pick up in the fall. If you have any simple ways to stay active, feel free to leave them in the comments below!