Corinne Austin | Personal Training

Move it or Lose it

IMG_2217The old cliché ‘Move it or Lose it’ has been around for donkeys years – in fact, it’s been around so long that I couldn’t even find any information about who first said it, or even the exact context it was first spoken in.  Regardless, we can assume that it was first spoken by a very wise man (or was it a woman?).


Today we find ourselves in a reality that is entirely different to what reality was just 25 years ago.  In our crazy world of extreme busy-ness we find ourselves immersed in an incredible assortment of technology, getting to and from places via motorized transportation, and then being so exhausted from it all that we collapse on the couch in a heap at the end of the day.  Our occupations are sedentary, our social activity is more docile than it is active, and to relax and unwind many of us turn to switching on NetFlix, Sky Sport, or peruse through social media forums – all of which tune us back into technology.


We seem to have forgotten the lost art of movement, the liberating sensations of movement, the age-defying values of movement, the critical life force that is movement.


We need to move – our lives depend on it!


Your body is one incredible machine.  There is an infinite number of things it can perform, and many of us very rarely even make a dent into discovering just how amazing how body really is.  Our body is the one place we have to live, forever.  We should be looking after it like it is one expensive, highly-respected, and treasured palace.


Similarly, there is a world outside of our doors (and our screens) that is truly magnificent.  We live in a sphere of magic; a place where there are so many undiscovered wonders, so many remarkable beauties, and so many healthful opportunities that are just waiting for us to pounce on them.  The outdoors gives us one gigantic platform on which we can create everlasting memories – and most of us just aren’t using it enough to make a difference to our physical or mental wellbeing.


By utilising our outdoor environment (and don’t take for granted how lucky we are in NZ to have it on our doorsteps – and have it be safe!) we naturally create action and movement in our bodies.  When we meet a buddy to go for a walk, mow the lawns (with a push mower!), chase after the kids on their bikes, plan a family adventure on beautiful forest track, take 30 minutes of our lunch hour to walk around the block, play with the dog, chop firewood, or weed the garden – it all counts towards movement.  It doesn’t have to be a 60 minute exercise session, it just has to be movement.  We simply just need to move more.

And we need to be conscious about moving more.  Research now shows that a 60 minute exercise session doesn’t undo a sedentary occupation – no matter how regularly it’s done.  Exercise is great for sure, and is definitely ticking the ‘movement’ box, but to be most effective, we need to do it far more often. Movement needs to be purposeful action taken frequently throughout the day to move the body, challenge the lungs, the heart, and the muscles, and that utilises the full mechanical, physiological, and chemical processes of the body.


Much like the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz, the more sedentary our lives are, the more immobile we become.  Movement is crucial in slowing down and even reversing the impact of the aging process.  Enhancing your strength, agility, flexibility and endurance is the best medicine for staying strong, keeping up with your kids and your grandchildren, and keeping your zest for life.


Here’s my three simply steps for moving more in your daily world: 1) Maximise your opportunities for movement and adapt a mindset that craves frequent movement; 2) Moderate the ways in which you move – be creative and daring; and 3) Minimise the excuses to not move i.e. too tired.  Movement energises you, and by embarking on an opportunity to move, you WILL feel better.


Release your body to do what it needs (and wants) to do – move!  You don’t know what you’ve got (or what you had) until it has gone.