Health and Wellbeing

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How do you currently move your body? With intent? With purpose? With love?

Unfortunately too many women and men who I come across move their bodies with anything but.

They move their bodies, as they want to change their bodies to a certain way, or are punishing themselves for treats, which they wish they hadn’t indulged in.

This needs to be changed.

Imagine this… You wake up in the morning after a full 7 – 8 hours of sleep, and before even rising check in with yourself – how are you feeling today? Any aches or pains? What do you want to do today and most relevant to this, how do you want to move today?

You hear back, a costal walk, with some music and change for a coffee on the way back, so you do that, even though you had planned a 6am gym session and it was leg day. How amazing would that feel? How much more fulfilling?

Ultimately our bodies already know what they need.

At different times of your life, your body is going to need to be moved differently, and it’s your responsibility to tune into that and respond.

If you’re stressed and having a awful time at work or in your personal life, you may need to take a more yin approach to your regime and soften it until your feeling stronger.

Alternatively you may wake up with a leap out of bed and a bundle of energy to burn, and decide not to do yoga, but to go for a run.

Both options are fantastic, but what the main take away is – ask your body what it needs, sit in silence, tune in and wait for the answer, and then do that.

It takes time to get here. If you’re used to making yourself run 10kms every morning whatever the weather, or how you were feeling, you may have some trouble switching off that mindset and listening to your softer side, or if this is a completely new suggestion to you may struggle again, this practice takes time, but once you adapt you won’t go back.

Yin and Yang means different things to us all, for me yin means flowing slower movements as opposed to pushing and striving.

When I feel like I need to fill myself up yin activities I choose are swimming, yoga, paddle boarding and surfing. Being in nature and grounded helps to reinvigorate me, choose exercise that feels that way for you and fills you up rather then depletes you.

Yang activities are when I feel like I have energy to give, to exhale. This means you’ll usually find me at a spin class, soft sand running, or jumping in to an interval training session at the gym. Something that’s going to get my heart soaring and make me feel alive.

Your body is a wonderful tool, and doesn’t need to be punished into submission. Choose to move it to nourish it, rather then strive to be something that its not. Treat it with kindness, love and respect, and it will love you right back.

Republished with permission. Originally appeared on Tanya Doherty’s site.