Show #372 From Exercise to Energised – Getting Moving Joyfully With Lizzie Williamson

                 

About this show:

Question: Have you found a way to enjoy movement or is it a chore? Lizzie Williamson brings joy and positive vibes into every room she enters, and today, she’s here to talk about not only how key movement is for our health but, movement as a joyful thing to do and finding that joy through movement, in a culture that often sees movement as a ‘have to’ and something one has to try and find ‘motivation’ for. We flip the script on today’s show.

We talk about: 

  • Language matters when it comes to movement
  • Motivation: It’s not what you need to start moving, it’s what you GET
  • Workplaces and movement
  • Common excuses: “I don’t have time to exercise”
  • Movement when it all feels challenging – depression, new parents, perimenopause, injury…Lizzie shares how it was a key piece of her post-natal depression healing. 
  • Joy: The missing piece! 
  • What to do when you just don’t want to

And a few brilliant tips in her second book: The Active Work Day Advantage! 

Such a great show – I can’t wait to learn what your aha’s are, Alexx, your Low Tox Life podcast host and founder of the Low Tox movement. 


Connect with Lizzie on the following platforms;

Websites: lizziewilliamson.com

Instagram: @energizewithlizzie

 

Lizzie is giving away 5 copies of The Active Workday Advantage Book for Free

 

Thank you to this month’s sponsor for partnering with our show and helping you make your swaps with their special offer: 

 

Waters Co. gives you 12% off all NEW systems – including benchtops, jug, mini, shower filters + Under-sink products with code LOWTOXLIFE.

Be sure to join me on Instagram @lowtoxlife and tag me with your shares and AHAS of this week’s episode.

 

Alexx Stuart

Founder of Low Tox Life and the Low Tox movement

@lowtoxlife

 

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Title show track, by LIOR.

Love the podcast music? You will hear excerpts from Lior’s track “Caught Up”  – go check it out on iTunes or Spotify if you want to hear the whole song or album, Scattered Reflections. Co-written with Cameron Deyell, it’s a great song and I love the reflective energy of it – perfect for the show, right? Enjoy. Lior is always touring, so do check out his website. It is wonderful to hear him sing live, trust me.

Low Tox Club – The place to bring your low tox life to life.

Want to join a community of like minds and enjoy all the perks of being in the Low Tox Life inner circle such as an online membership platform, 50% off all our Low Tox courses, an awesome chat group, my monthly Q&A, and special guest star interviews for just $49AUD ($29USD/28EUR/23pounds) per YEAR? We have created a special place and set of resources to help you achieve your goals and it’s a wonderful place to be – MORE DETAILS AND REGISTRATION HERE.

 

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About Lizzie Williamson

 

Dubbed by the US media as ‘the excuse-buster from Down-Under’, Lizzie Williamson is the founder and author of Two Minute Moves and The Active Workday Advantage, TEDx speaker, keynote speaker, fitness presenter and certified personal trainer. She is a regular on morning television and in global news publications with her work featured on Good Morning America, Studio 10, the Today Show, Women’s Health and Prevention Magazine. Through her fun, interactive keynotes, workshops and videos, Lizzie motivates workforces around the world to achieve a more energised, engaged and happy workday by making it easy (and fun) to be more active. She has got hundreds of thousands of attendees around the world stretching, moving and dancing at conferences featuring President Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, Arianna Huffington and the Dalia Lama. Though nothing beats dancing around the kitchen to Taylor Swift with her two teenage girls. 


Connect with Lizzie on the following platforms;

  .

 

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Transcipt:

(0:00 – 0:19)

Hello, Lizzie, how you doing? Hello, I’m so happy to be here. I’m so happy to have you on the show. I think we have known each other for a lot, a lot, a lot of years as two bright buttons who wanted to make a difference in helping people feel better a long time ago.

 

(0:19 – 0:31)

And here we still are. And today’s conversation is about your wheelhouse, which is getting us all moving more. And I’ll never forget the first conference that I saw you do your thing at.

 

(0:31 – 0:52)

It was a mind conference and you were like getting us moving. And it was so interesting. I’m such a psych nerd to watch different audience members kind of going, oh God, like I’m going to feel stupid or like they’re not actually focused on the beauty of the movement and feeling your body more self-conscious.

 

(0:53 – 1:12)

And you talk about this in your recent book. I was so stoked as I was reading it that you bring up that theme of looking out at a sea of people when you’re doing conferences and seeing all the different trepidation and reluctance. And then there’s always the gung-ho gym junkie who’s like, come on people, let’s do this.

 

(1:13 – 1:38)

And it’s like just looking at society in a two minute break in a conference. I want to ask you why you were drawn first with an exercise background to workplaces. What were you seeing there many moons ago where you thought we’ve got to get these people moving? It actually started doing these conferences.

 

(1:39 – 1:54)

And let me tell you that mind conference was the first time I had ever done that. And I was terrified. I think I remember what anyone was going to do because I had been sitting for years at these conferences and I’ve been looking around at certain times a day.

 

(1:54 – 2:11)

And I’d noticed people starting to scoot around in their chair, a bit squirm a little bit because their lower back’s starting to get a bit achy. They’re stifling the yawns, kind of looking around, they’re getting a bit distracted. Even if the speakers were amazing, it just naturally starts to happen when we are sitting down and focusing for a long time.

 

(2:11 – 2:38)

And I remember thinking, if I could just get up on these stages at these conferences and get people moving a little bit, I reckon the whole energy in the room, so that mind conference was the first organizer that I convinced to let me do it. And since that day, it’s usually the same kind of reaction. If people know they’re going to get moving, first of all, I can hear out in the audience, oh, the groan.

 

(2:39 – 2:58)

Can you imagine starting your job with everyone just going, oh. And then one person starts and the next and the next and this crazy thing happens because movement and this energy, it’s actually infectious. And one person doing it in a way gives the person next to them permission to do the same and the next and the next.

 

(2:58 – 3:28)

And those groans, I hear all the time at the end, people say to me, oh, thank you so much. I didn’t actually realize how much I needed that. And then I started looking out at these conferences, these audience of all these people at work thinking, imagine if we could do this in your work day, maybe not necessarily getting up with a big song on and having a dance, but finding little ways to move either as an individual or as a collective part of the culture.

 

(3:28 – 3:44)

What difference would this make? And so that’s what I set out to do, working with different workplaces, seeing what worked. And it’s pretty amazing what happens when people start moving more at work. So it’s like a little dopamine factory as well, movement.

 

(3:44 – 4:03)

So, you know, I always say to my son, he’ll lose two, three points on the trot in a tennis match. And he’s like, you know, a surly 14 year old at the moment. So it’s not the most right button age bracket for a young man, but he’ll mope through the points.

 

(4:03 – 4:25)

He’ll just drag his feet and it’ll all be slow. And I’m like, dude, if you just walked on purpose, head held high, bit of energy, you get your dopamine pumping, you’ll be able to focus on the next point more instead of the story you’re telling yourself about the previous points. And I feel like in the workplace, we can kind of do with that same juju.

 

(4:26 – 4:36)

Yeah, definitely. I mean, look, the idea of exercising in the workplace might make people go, oh gosh, no way. It just, I’m just not going to do it.

 

(4:36 – 4:49)

But if you think about, for example, your son there, you know, how it feels when that’s happening to him, how he’s holding his body. It’s probably, you know, just splashed down a bit. I mean, so many of us spend a lot of our days like that as well.

 

(4:49 – 5:08)

We kind of get a bit hunched over and then the day goes, we carry all this stuff in our body and we just get more and more stress builds. The shoulders get sore, all that kind of stuff. And what we know from research is that the way we hold our bodies actually makes a big difference to the way that we feel.

 

(5:08 – 5:15)

So when you’re saying to your son there, hold your head up high, keep going, come on. It’s going to make a difference to the way that you feel. That’s actually true.

 

(5:15 – 5:46)

So even a simple little shift in our workday of bringing our shoulders back, rolling them back a little bit, twisting our spine from side to side, getting moving in that kind of way, it’s going to help us feel better. 100%, I could not agree more. And do we have some, I mean, I know you talk about some of the aspects of what we know in the book, but like the way we work, whether you’re working from home or in an office, it’s not working.

 

(5:46 – 6:04)

Like you can see some of the negative effects. What’s the research showing us on a bigger scale? Well, first of all, one in two Australians aren’t getting enough physical activity to maintain good health. And that’s a very similar story in other countries around the world, in Western countries.

 

(6:05 – 6:07)

50%. Yeah. Wow.

 

(6:08 – 6:23)

It makes a lot of sense if you think about it, that we have to get 150 minutes of exercise in our week. That’s what we’re told. And that can feel like a lot in our jam-packed weeks.

 

(6:23 – 6:42)

But what we also know is that if we are exercising, say in the morning, going to the gym, something like that, maybe going for a half hour walk at night, but then still spending the majority of your day sedentary. So not really moving very much. You’ve got these long periods of prolonged sitting without taking breaks.

 

(6:43 – 7:00)

But that bit of exercise on either side, it’s probably not enough to counteract those negative impacts you get from too much sitting. And we know this from our government guidelines have been imploring us for years. Yeah, some guidelines that are actually worth following.

 

(7:00 – 7:21)

World Health Organization have put the workplace on this high priority that we need to get more active at work. We need to break up these long hours of our body being in this stuck position. So we know from all the research that sitting for these long hours without taking breaks, without getting some kind of movement in our day isn’t doing us any favours.

 

(7:21 – 7:48)

But it’s a hard thing to break because a lot of us, myself included, have been working in the same way for quite a long time. Yeah. And I love this analogy that you use around if offices had shelves and aisles of, okay, you just pop here and you can have one of those or two of those and that’ll give you some energy and pop one of these and that’ll give you some more focus.

 

(7:48 – 8:42)

And I mean, we see it on their Instagram and Facebook ads, right? Everything is a new tropic now to try and get you to focus more or feel more energised. And yet we have this free resource that exists that we just have to do and incorporate and that’ll get us a long way of the way there. How do you work in the work you do to help dismantle this pill for ill thinking in society? Like where do you see the big shifts in people? It’s incredible, isn’t it? This inner pharmacy that we have inside of us just waiting to come out and what we need to do to feel more hopeful to get those myokines, to feel more calmer, to get those endocannabinoids, to get our brain switched on, to get that brain derived neurotropic factor is get physically active.

 

(8:42 – 9:00)

And yet we’re not using this incredible tool. So many of us are sitting there or even just standing in the same position, not using this powerful thing that is movement. And I think a big shift can happen for individuals and workplaces.

 

(9:00 – 9:14)

When we reimagine what this whole exercise thing has to look like. Yeah, I was going to ask you about that because the word even just, it just sounds like a have to. Have you exercised? Yes.

 

(9:15 – 9:29)

I mean, if you think about the root meaning of the word, it is very much like an action to take that you have to seek out and do. So it needs a new marketing plan. It totally does.

 

(9:29 – 9:34)

I mean, I’ve got one. We just take out a couple of letters or three letters. So it becomes the word energize.

 

(9:35 – 9:54)

Love it. Exercise to energize. So if you say to yourself, oh, how am I going to exercise today compared to how am I going to energize today? How do I exercise at work? How do I energize at work? So rather than it being this, oh, here’s another thing that I have to do now at work, I have to exercise.

 

(9:55 – 10:03)

It’s the thing going, okay, well, this thing, this tool is getting my body moving in some way. It’s actually going to help energize me. That’s what it does.

 

(10:04 – 10:24)

So how can I find those little moments for that to happen? I think when I say to people, oh, we need to exercise at work, then people imagine the fact that they have to get up and do 20 star jumps or get down on the floor and do 10 pushups or something like that. They have to do embarrassing things in front of their colleagues that they have to all do together. They have to work up a sweat.

 

(10:24 – 10:39)

They have to get in fancy active wear. They have to be an hour. All the things that we tell ourselves about exercise and the rules that we have around it, where in fact, our body, our brain, it doesn’t care that we think that exercise has to look this certain way.

 

(10:39 – 10:45)

It just wants us to move. However, whenever, you just need to find those little moments. Yeah, a hundred percent.

 

(10:45 – 11:07)

And so what does that look like for you on a daily basis? Like you pushing out a bunch of podcasts, launching a book, maybe writing the book. What did that look like for you when you were writing? With the writing, I had to set alerts because I would just get in this hours. Hours can go by.

 

(11:07 – 11:20)

We’ve all probably got those things that we do. And it just, I’ve even writing a book about it and I was forgetting to do it unless I had a reminder, but I could not have that phone on my desk with the timer. I had to have it somewhere else.

 

(11:20 – 11:28)

So I actually had to get up and go, okay, stop, stop for a moment. Get up and actually get that phone. Turn it off on my phone alarm.

 

(11:28 – 11:43)

It said stretch. And so I just reached my arms up, have a little walk on the spot because I know the research is that, you know, compared to sitting, having a walk, even if it’s just inside increases your creative output by 60%. And those creative juices continue to flow even after you sat back down.

 

(11:43 – 11:58)

So the best thing you could be doing right now, even if you think it is just need to power on to get this book finished. The best thing you could do for your book, for your work is actually to get moving in some kind of way. So that’s certainly what I did during the book.

 

(11:59 – 12:10)

And when it’s not so intense, I’ve got my little habits that I do. So that I make sure that I can remember to do it from certain times. Mm, great advice.

 

(12:10 – 12:33)

And for people who are in like open plan offices where it sometimes feels like, oh God, you know, Susie from accounts can see me or like, do we move to the bathroom? If we feel a bit self-conscious, we pop downstairs, quick walk around the block. A lot of people move to the bathroom. So you can do that.

 

(12:33 – 12:54)

If you’re someone who takes phone calls and you’re able to stand up and have a little walk around, even just get outside, do some stairs, something like that. If you can even just stand up there at your desk on a phone call is a great little habit to get into. But also if that’s even too hard, you could do the most subtle little things at your desk.

 

(12:54 – 13:03)

And this is where it comes back to this idea that it doesn’t have to be huge. We can make this really small and that’s great. That’s okay.

 

(13:04 – 13:29)

A simple little moment of turning your head away from the computer, moving your neck out of that same position. Now that it’s been in probably for a long time, turn it to one side, turn it to the other. A study by Microsoft lab, Arianna Huffington did saying this, that little micro break, looking away from the screen for a moment, you come back, it actually helps you to reset stress and improves your productivity and even your happiness.

 

(13:29 – 13:43)

You can imagine that you have, you’re charging up your computer underneath your desk. And even just that feeling of rolling down that movement, letting your shoulders drop, your neck drop, pretend you’re fixing up your shoe. You’ve dropped a pen, something.

 

(13:44 – 13:53)

Someone’s called out behind you. Do a little twist from one side, twist to the other side, just raise both arms up and drop them on down. Roll your shoulders back.

 

(13:54 – 14:03)

And that lady from accounts, she’s gonna see you doing it. And she might go, oh gosh, my shoulders are a bit stiff too. I’m just gonna roll my shoulders back for a minute.

 

(14:03 – 14:14)

And then the person next to her, they’ll go, oh yeah, my shoulders. And they’re gonna roll their shoulders back. So what happens is that you, in a way, give the person next to you permission to do the same.

 

(14:14 – 14:36)

So it is nice to even just be a tiny bit bold if you can be, and take your meetings walking, stand up for a moment, or even just subtle little things that you can do at your desk. Because then you’re giving that gift of movement of taking care of yourself to those around you. And you can do that virtually on a meeting too.

 

(14:37 – 14:47)

A hundred percent. I mean, whoever’s sat in an economy seat on an airplane, you have like the little program where you can follow the exercises. And it really makes a difference.

 

(14:47 – 15:02)

You feel much better when you go through and do the routine. So I think, yeah, it’s usually, because we haven’t identified, we really, it’s critical. It’s actually critical to us doing well.

 

(15:02 – 15:32)

And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve thought to myself, no, I’m just gonna sit here before I get up and I’m gonna get this done. But because I’ve been there so long trying to get it done, it takes even longer because I’m so drowsy at that point trying to get this thing done that I’ve got no dopamine left in the tank. Whereas if I’d just popped up, put the kettle on, done 10 squats and a few shoulder, that’s my usual routine, 10 squats and some shoulder rolls.

 

(15:34 – 15:44)

I of course would have got it done better. And you often like, it’s almost like we need to reteach ourselves. Do you need to reteach yourself sometimes? I go, come on, you know this.

 

(15:45 – 15:54)

Absolutely. I think we could also take inspiration from other places as well. Because I know for me, when I have been watching this show on Netflix called Drive to Survive.

 

(15:54 – 16:00)

Oh yeah, my son’s very into that. So am I now, I can’t believe it. My family, we’re all totally into it.

 

(16:01 – 16:15)

And when I was watching it, I was just thinking about these drivers because they are there, getting to the end of the finish line, every millisecond counts. And yet they have to stop. They have to box, box.

 

(16:15 – 16:26)

They have to take this pit stop because they know they’ve got to change their tires, fix their engine, all the little things that they do. And it takes, you know, so quick they do it. And then they get back on.

 

(16:26 – 16:43)

And I can imagine they would not want to go and box, but they do it because that’s going to help them get to the finish line. So that’s just really helped me when I think about my day. The, well, these are high performers at the top of their game and they need to take these little moments to get their vehicle back on track.

 

(16:43 – 16:48)

And that’s what I need to do too. That’s what we all need to be doing. Yeah, so true.

 

(16:49 – 17:15)

God, you could think about it for every sport, like the water break or the change of ends at tennis. Everyone takes a break and from whatever they’re doing. So it’s almost the act of changing things up kind of like when you get taught your bronze medallion swimming safety to change up your strokes to have more power and longevity and safety to be able to swim for longer.

 

(17:16 – 17:29)

That feels like a really good little way to frame this. It’s like, have you been in the same swimming stroke for too long? Change it up and movement is the best way to do that. So, okay.

 

(17:30 – 17:42)

Motivation. Seb and I last year or the year before we read Dave Goggins’s two books in audio book. We had an appointment that was across town once a week for a bit.

 

(17:42 – 18:00)

So it was a really great opportunity to listen to those. And I love, it really hit home for me that motivation is never gonna come. Well, it might sometimes but it is not your reliable friend and it has to come from within.

 

(18:00 – 18:19)

And so I wanted to ask you because you talk about this. What is the power of just ditching motivation as the idea to get moving? Like where is the freedom in that? Cause I feel like that’s what it is. It’s like, oh, it’s not coming.

 

(18:20 – 18:26)

So the pressure’s off to try and wait for it to come. Right? Yeah, I love that. The freedom of that.

 

(18:27 – 18:52)

For me, my big shift in motivation actually came 15 years ago when I had postnatal depression and this whole two minute move thing came to be for me quite by accident when I was doing these little two minute workouts at my kitchen bench. And what I started to see was that I had felt like I had zero motivation. And then I would always think, okay, I’m not motivated.

 

(18:52 – 19:13)

I can’t do it. And then somehow I started to flip that and think, gosh, I am so unmotivated to do this thing that is going to make me feel better. That is obviously a sign that lack of motivation that I need to do that thing more than ever.

 

(19:14 – 19:40)

So rather than waiting for that motivation to come to take action, I started to go, I’m feeling so unmotivated here. I need some action to help me get going, to help me feel more motivated perhaps or want to do some more. So in a way, this lack of motivation or motivation not being there just became my signal.

 

(19:41 – 20:03)

And in a crazy way, it actually became my motivation to actually take some action. And how much I realized that that action was the thing that preceded motivation or preceded that thing to help you take more action. So if you’re there one day thinking, oh man, this is motivation thing.

 

(20:04 – 20:08)

It’s never gonna come. I’m feeling so unmotivated. I just cannot be bothered.

 

(20:09 – 20:19)

Okay, that’s gotta be the signal to yourself that you need to do this more than ever. I love that. I love that so much.

 

(20:19 – 20:51)

And casting your mind back to that time, would you say that that was one of the most helpful things through postnatal depression? Yes, definitely. That and the idea of the small little things is taking this tiny, tiny action. And in a way, it was much easier to convince myself to do that because I wasn’t there saying to myself, come on, out you go for that hour walk.

 

(20:51 – 21:03)

I was saying to myself, all you have to do is this little thing, just do two minutes, that’s it. And then once you’d done two minutes, you’re like, sometimes I fancy doing more. Absolutely.

 

(21:03 – 21:21)

And if I didn’t, I would make sure I always said to myself, well, that’s still great. Two minutes is better than no minutes. A lot of offices have built in kind of classes now, timetables, visiting yoga instructors, all sorts of great ways to get people moving.

 

(21:21 – 21:38)

And a lot of workplaces still don’t. But we’ve talked about some of the ways that that doesn’t really need to be the differential factor as to whether you move or not, whether it’s sort of handed to you on the platter. Let’s talk about joy and movement.

 

(21:39 – 22:16)

It’s a journey I’ve personally been on, rediscovering tennis over the last few years and remembering that if I have joy in movement, then boy, you literally have to try and get me to not move. It’s so powerful if you’re connected to joy. Why do you think that could be one of the great secrets for people to uncover in themselves when it comes to feeling a connection between movement, positivity and wellbeing? Because then it doesn’t feel like exercise.

 

(22:16 – 22:28)

Yes, that’s what takes us away from that word, isn’t it? Two nights ago, I exercised for three and a half hours nonstop. I was jumping. I had my hands in the air.

 

(22:28 – 22:37)

I was doing my hips from side to side. And that was at a Taylor Swift concert. That was exercise.

 

(22:37 – 22:52)

Do you know what did I think for a moment? That I was exercising? No, I just had so much joy. Can you imagine halfway into the set? Like, yeah, I’m done with my workout. Bye bye, Tay Tay.

 

(22:52 – 22:59)

I think I’ll go home now. I’ve done my hour and oh, whoops, I’m not in my active wear. So I better stop.

 

(22:59 – 23:11)

I don’t have my right shoes and all that sort of stuff. And the amazing thing, I mean, gosh, that night, what you could see it. But I also see this on a much, much smaller scale.

 

(23:11 – 23:35)

When I see people moving in conferences and workplaces, joy is infectious. And not only when you feel joyful that you have moved in a way that made you feel more joyful, are you more than joyful to someone else? And that helps them feel more joyful. But when you do something like getting moving together and you have that collective joy, that is so, so powerful.

 

(23:36 – 23:47)

And so you would have, we’ve heard it so many times before. It’s finding those ways to move that brings you joy. And for every person that is quite different.

 

(23:48 – 24:11)

But music does really, really help in my experience. And the workplaces I know that, you know, plays and do some movement on meetings and play some music when they get together. That really does help bring up the joy and help bring up the energy and help people get a bit looser in their bodies and wanna move a bit more.

 

(24:11 – 24:53)

If you can get yourself a joy playlist, those songs that when you feel like, I can’t be bothered moving and you can press play, chances are, you know, you might find if you, even if you’re sitting in your chair at work, you might sort of start to do a little bit of a chair dance and go a bit side to side, a little bop or something, even like a little dance, dance together. But yeah, if we can stop thinking about exercise as this chore, a bore, a punishment for eating a certain way, anything like that. And it’s then, and we start thinking about it as a way and a tool that we can use to bring us joy, to bring us energy.

 

(24:53 – 25:06)

What I see is that makes it much easier for people to embrace this whole concept. Mm, you mentioned a punishment for eating a certain way. Oh, that’s a big one.

 

(25:06 – 25:35)

And how many times have we seen on socials or we’ve heard a friend kind of casually say, oh, I’ve earned this donut. I did a crazy cardio class this morning at the gym, or I’ve earned this big schooner of beer after the marathon or earned things that aren’t helpful for us. Like, okay, so two things I wanna ask, say, slash, let’s have a chat about it.

 

(25:35 – 26:23)

One is, I just think harping on about that one or two things that you have during the week that might not be the perfect food or drink scenario really deflects from the bigger picture of probably eating pretty well most of the time and then just like picking on this one thing, but then tying it to exercise, like it’s kind of credit points or something. What is that doing to us psychologically? Like, what does that affirm in us, do you think? If you are exercising to make your body look a certain way, and then if you don’t get those results that you are wanting, then you think, oh, why bother with this exercise thing? That’s not working for me. I was 18 years old, I was a dancer on a cruise ship and the first day I got on, I was so, so excited.

 

(26:23 – 26:43)

And all of us dancers were told that we needed to lose weight. And so from that moment, after recovering from what felt like someone had punched me in the stomach, was that I went, okay, exercise, getting on that treadmill. That’s gonna be the thing that fixes my body.

 

(26:44 – 26:57)

Fixes my body, how awful. Exercise was the punishment, exercise was the fixer. And do you think that made me feel very good about myself? No.

 

(26:57 – 27:17)

And then I had two daughters and I thought, gosh, I have got to somehow shift this perspective in a true way. In a way that was really, really my truth and a very authentic thing for me. And that big switch was that moving for your mood.

 

(27:17 – 27:32)

Movement is medicine rather than moving to change your body. Is that Stella and Ruby that you dedicated the book to? I love the quote, dream big, start small. So gorgeous.

 

(27:33 – 28:00)

How are they doing with exercise and movement? Have you succeeded so far in your mission with your girls? An incredible thing happened one day. I didn’t know whether I had, I mean, I remember during lockdown, just dragging them out for a walk every morning and I didn’t want to go and shoulders are hunched and everything. They kind of know that we’ve all got our non-negotiable things as mums and movement is one of my non-negotiables.

 

(28:01 – 28:19)

But still, it’s so hard to get teenagers to do anything. What are you gonna do? Force them around the block. But this incredible thing happened, I remember a few years ago and Ruby said, oh, I’m just feeling so tired and annoyed, all this kind of stuff.

 

(28:19 – 28:35)

She goes, I’m just gonna go out for a run. And I went, okay, that sounds really good, Ruby, bye. And I went, wow, she has seen me for years and years and years and heard me for so many years saying, oh, I’m just not feeling very great.

 

(28:36 – 28:42)

I’m just gonna go for a walk, I’ll be back. Or gosh, I just need some energy. Let’s just turn on this song and have a dance, whatever.

 

(28:43 – 28:51)

And for years I was thinking, that’s obviously hasn’t rubbed off on them. They’re not doing it. And then one day she started doing it.

 

(28:51 – 29:16)

And now she goes, oh gosh, that made me feel better and continues to do that. But the lesson to me was never give up on the role modeling, never stop saying out loud what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. Adam Grant talks about in his book, Hidden Potential, how his daughter said to him, why do you never read, dad? And he said, what are you talking about? Look at all these books on my bookshelf, I do so much reading.

 

(29:17 – 29:34)

And he realized that she never saw him read because it was a separate thing that he did at nighttime after she’d gone to bed. And in a way, it’s the same thing with the role modeling of movement to our kids, to our friends, to our partners. They need to see you doing it.

 

(29:34 – 30:16)

And I felt it was really important for my girls that I always told them in a way why I was doing it because the last thing I wanted was for them to feel like they had to, you know, do it for the reasons that don’t make them feel very good. A hundred percent. And what would you say to a mom where you were or parent where you they were experiencing this unhealthy issue around exercise and punishment? I think you using that word for 18 year old Lizzie on the cruise ship, punishment, it is so true, isn’t it? I’m going to punish myself, my bad body, my body that’s not good enough.

 

(30:16 – 30:45)

I mean, there’s just so much to unpack with the cultural influences of how we end up seeing movement as a really big negative in our lives. So many of us. But I guess if someone’s there right now, would you say role modeling would be the number one? Like just start going for a walk yourself and not even saying anything about the fact that walks are good or and just say, I’m just going for a walk.

 

(30:45 – 30:56)

Yeah. And come back and go, oh, man, my brain is so much clearer now or just a really nice stretch. I just feel in such a better way now.

 

(30:56 – 31:07)

I’ve had that stretch. You know, all those little things actually vocalizing what’s happening when you actually take these little moments to move. I think that’s really, really important.

 

(31:07 – 31:20)

Rather than saying you should be doing this, do it yourself. And then you might actually start discovering yourself. All right, I’m doing this and this is how it actually makes me feel.

 

(31:20 – 31:32)

And if I need to feel less stressed, I’m going to have a little punch out of my arms in front of me. And that’s how that makes me feel a little bit better. And your kids might see that as well.

 

(31:32 – 31:48)

I think our kids and people in our life pick up on so much more than we realize. And maybe in particular, I mean, the teenage years, maybe in particular teenagers, you think they’re kind of not getting it. And then one day they’ll just surprise you.

 

(31:48 – 32:13)

But if you’re in that state where it is exercise as punishment or even hating exercise, start to have a little an experiment. What’s one way you want to feel in your day? And how could you use movement? Even just a little moment of a stretch of a little walk of a dance, whatever. How can you use that to help you, say, feel less stressed? And then talk about it.

 

(32:13 – 32:17)

Say it. Tell someone you did it. Tell a colleague that you did it.

 

(32:17 – 32:21)

Gosh, you just started to do this. It’s just been making me feel really good. Maybe we should do this together.

 

(32:22 – 32:39)

Maybe we should all do this on our next meeting and start to start to share the results that you’re getting. Hundred percent. And I think even recovering from chronic illness or last year, I broke a tiny little fracture in my foot from a freak.

 

(32:39 – 33:12)

Take the dog for a walk accident and he saw a rat fell over a step in a way that no human foot should ever have to experience. But something I really noticed was because my tennis got taken away, my movement absolutely plummeted because that was my motivating movement. So I didn’t actually have the memo yet on move to feel more motivated and more energized.

 

(33:12 – 33:18)

It’s not the other way around. Motivate yourself to move. I think we have to learn that.

 

(33:18 – 33:32)

I really, really probably relearned it, I would say last year. And and I think of chronic illness then and other injuries. There’s always something we can do.

 

(33:32 – 33:40)

Right. And it’s just about meeting yourself where you’re at, like even if it’s lymphatic movement and like massage. So you’re moving tissue.

 

(33:40 – 33:53)

Right. Other kind of ideas in that realm when we’re just when we’re really like out for the count for the things we would normally do, because that can often derail people. It certainly derailed me last year for a little bit.

 

(33:54 – 34:02)

Yeah. Turn that all or nothing into all or something. Because something so much better than nothing.

 

(34:02 – 34:11)

So the all that perhaps you used to be able to do when you were super fit and you were running around the tennis court and all that kind of thing. I can’t do that anymore. So what can I do? I can do nothing.

 

(34:12 – 34:41)

So what’s the little something that that you can be doing? So one of my favorite things to do if someone’s feeling they can’t get down on the floor anymore and do push ups or even say a downward dog and yoga at the moment is feeling hard to keep up your strength work. Flick the switch on the kettle when you’re boiling a cup of tea and then hands on your kitchen bench and just do even just one half little push up. If that feels OK.

 

(34:41 – 35:13)

Or next to your desk, do a little wall push up if that feels good. So you’re still getting this really nice feeling of strength and you might work up to, say, doing 10 of those. If that’s feeling too hard and this idea of even getting up and moving, what can you do on your chair? What can you do when you are there on a virtual meeting? How can you even just move your body a little bit? You know, there’s so many studies that show how these little moments of movement actually count.

 

(35:14 – 35:33)

There’s one by Columbia University that shows that a one minute walk every 30 minutes helps us to bust fatigue, puts us in a better mood, helps us to regulate our blood sugar levels as well. That’s a one minute walk. And I think so often what we say to ourselves is I can’t do the 30 minutes.

 

(35:33 – 35:47)

I can’t do the 60 minutes. There’s just no point. But that 150 minutes of exercise that we’re recommended to do, we know now from research is that can be broken up in little moments and you still get the benefits.

 

(35:48 – 36:15)

Reimagine this whole exercise thing for you now, wherever you are at. What is one little thing that you can do? And what’s so important next is then when you do it, even if it’s not that marathon you used to do, even if now you can just do a minute walk, you need to celebrate it. You need to take that little moment after you’ve done it and see yourself in the reflection of your computer or your window and give yourself a high five or a fist pump or say to yourself just inside.

 

(36:16 – 36:34)

Yes, I did that because we need to celebrate the little things that we do, because not only does that give us this really good sense of achievement, makes us feel a bit better, but also our brain loves it. It thinks, oh, they’ve done something great. We should do that again sometime.

 

(36:34 – 36:54)

Yeah, you feel clever. So we talked about obviously the negative psychological impact of earning bad food, but I wanted to run something past you that I have going on in my head just in case other people out there do as well. I earn my sloth time.

 

(36:54 – 37:09)

So I don’t let myself sloth. And by slothing, I mean just once or twice a week, I will unashamedly lie down and watch a whole tennis match. Or two episodes of a show I’m enjoying that just escape light.

 

(37:09 – 37:22)

Awesome. But I will not let myself do that unless I have moved. Because if I have sloth time and I was slothy before sloth time, I feel guilty about sloth time.

 

(37:23 – 37:48)

Whereas if I was energized coming into sloth time, it feels more like an appropriate rest. Does that make sense? And is it OK? Or is that does that have a negative connotation as well? Should I should I be reframing something there? Well, let me ask you this question. Do you think in this process that you are being kind to yourself? Oh, yeah.

 

(37:49 – 37:59)

No, like I go for a beautiful it’s a beautiful walk in the neighborhood. It’s not, oh, God, here I am. Like it’ll just be taking the dog for a walk, something like that.

 

(37:59 – 38:24)

I think as long as we are being kind to ourselves and not being hard on ourselves, we’re so hard on ourselves. So if if you listen, I have just listened to that and think, oh, gosh, I’m going to I’m going to just feel too bad about myself if I don’t do it. Or, you know, whatever’s going in your head, if you’re being hard on yourself about it, then maybe that’s that’s not for you.

 

(38:24 – 38:38)

But if you can do this in a kind way to yourself, and that’s that’s the deal that you make. And and I’m doing this because, you know, it makes me it makes me feel good. I feel like I just get down on the couch and just, you know, feel better.

 

(38:38 – 38:45)

Now I’ve done that work and that walk. Sorry, that’s that’s fantastic. But the whole word.

 

(38:47 – 38:56)

Deserve does make me feel a little bit. It’s on the edge, isn’t it? On the edge. That’s why I’m saying if it works for you, great.

 

(38:56 – 39:13)

And if you’re not being hard on yourself about it, if you’re being kind to yourself, I know people that won’t listen to a podcast unless they’re walking. So in a way, that’s their reward. So you are, in a way, giving yourself a reward after having that walk.

 

(39:13 – 39:26)

And that reward is that you get to just go like that. So we need that reward part of it in the habit loop. So it’s finding what works for you in a way that you feel good about yourself doing.

 

(39:27 – 39:43)

And you’re not bad about yourself. So it’s like both scenarios have to feel like 100 percent great or at least like I’m not now telling myself a story about what an awful person I am for watching this show now. Or I don’t.

 

(39:43 – 40:02)

But I do recognize that if I haven’t moved during the day and then I sit down and spend another two hours, it just it’s it’s fundamentally goes against feeling great overall. So I will feel lethargic after my slothy time instead of well rested. And they really do feel different.

 

(40:03 – 40:13)

Yeah. And what you’re doing there is so great because in the in the habit loop, you’re changing up your your routine because normally you might go, oh, that’s it. I’m just done.

 

(40:13 – 40:18)

And I’m just going to just go straight to the couch. What you’ve gone is, OK, I’m done. I want to go to the couch.

 

(40:18 – 40:36)

I’m just going to get in that little habit of going for that walk or doing some kind of movement first. And then I get that lovely feeling that that happens when you just get to just crash on the couch. And in a way, you’ve enhanced that feeling because you have mixed up that that routine a little bit.

 

(40:36 – 40:55)

It’s such a great way to do it. If you’re someone that at the end of the day, they go straight for that glass of wine. What you could do is at the end of the day, before you go for that glass of wine or even instead of going for that glass of wine, do some kind of physical activity, some movement, some walk, whatever it is.

 

(40:55 – 41:17)

And then you get that lovely reward at the end, that feeling of feeling the distress, all the things that perhaps that that glass of wine might might give you or just have the glass of wine after the walk like you’re doing the couch. Yeah, the more we think about this, the more I think it’s quite brilliant. If only I could have a glass of wine.

 

(41:17 – 41:32)

No, unfortunately, perimenopause says no, absolutely not. I will give you palpitations at a sleepless night. So yeah, there’s no glass of wine in my picture, but but there is some good sloth time once or twice a week that I unashamedly take.

 

(41:33 – 41:46)

And I think it is just that overall feeling active. You know, because we’re increasing our positive neurotransmitters as well. So then it’s less likely you would tell yourself a negative story about chilling out.

 

(41:47 – 42:02)

Like you don’t deserve it or you should be ashamed of yourself. You should be going to that, you know, yoga class you said you were going to go to. I don’t have to tell myself any of those things because I’m kicking my movement in a joyful way.

 

(42:02 – 42:19)

So joyful movement that feels like that is the banner. That is the flag we’re flying here as an overall theme. But I would like to ask the queen of movement to finish what your sloth activities are.

 

(42:21 – 42:28)

And the reason I want to do this is because we often just have this idea of people. Oh, it’s easy for her. She’s in she works in movement.

 

(42:28 – 42:41)

Is it well, actually, she’s book author and a conference speaker. So there’s a lot of sitting in both of those pictures and it’s not necessarily easy. And you still deserve to chill out.

 

(42:41 – 42:57)

So what does chilling out look like for you? One of my favorite things is to go down to the beach under a beach cover and with a book. And I usually read. Sometimes I do it with my girls as well, which is even better.

 

(42:57 – 43:06)

I just love it. And so we’ll probably all read one page of this book and then we all just fall asleep. Oh, my God, how good.

 

(43:06 – 43:16)

It’s crash. Find a beach with a bit of shade or somewhere, a park, whatever. And just to go and sleep in the day on the weekend.

 

(43:17 – 43:25)

That’s just such a beautiful sloth moment. And don’t get me wrong. I mean, I love my TV and just crashing in front of the couch as well.

 

(43:25 – 43:42)

But there’s something that just feels so sloth like lying somewhere in the shade with a book that you only say a few sentences and then you just fall asleep. I mean, it’s just I just making me want to go do that right now. Thanks, Alex.

 

(43:43 – 43:48)

I got a big day ahead of me. I can’t be doing that. As we record, I’m just going to do a few jumps on the spot.

 

(43:48 – 44:02)

Yeah, I’m getting up to do my little kettle squats soon with with another cup of tea for another recording. I get it. Lizzie, you’re such a fountain of not only knowledge, but energy.

 

(44:02 – 44:10)

You bring such a beautiful positivity to the movement space. I’ve never felt a sense of have to more just like, oh, here’s Lizzie. Yeah, OK.

 

(44:10 – 44:18)

And I don’t really feel but she’s got me. OK, actually, this is quite nice. I’ve always had that experience being in your aura.

 

(44:18 – 44:49)

So thank you for what you bring to the space and and and to people everywhere. I mean, you know the beauty of the Internet, right? What can we do this week? Give us a little something to experiment with a curiosity. Think about one thing that you do in your day that you do regularly, whether that is flicking the switch on the kettle, whether that is making a particular phone call, a certain meeting that you get on.

 

(44:49 – 45:08)

And how can you attach or stack the BJ Fogg habit stacking? How can you stack on before, during or after one little moment of movement? Two minutes, 10 seconds. It doesn’t matter. And then do that each day for the next week.

 

(45:08 – 45:15)

Just that one little thing. Every time you have done it, you’ve done those 10 push ups. You’ve stood up and have a little walk on the spot.

 

(45:15 – 45:23)

You’ve done a little moment of a chair stretch. You need to celebrate that moment. Find your what that little celebration looks for you.

 

(45:23 – 45:42)

Celebrate it and do it again the next day and the next. And what you’ll start to see is that these small little things that we do in our day, in our week, in our life, they actually matter so much. Because they start to add up to make this big difference.

 

(45:42 – 46:12)

If you had told me when I did that first little two minute move at my kitchen bench 15 years ago, that I would be here speaking to you, there is no way I would have believed you. But it was such a tiny first step and a tiny next step and next and slowly started to build this business, this life and all of this kind of stuff. And I look back, I think the reason I’m here, it’s from that tiny little moment that I took and just kept taking consistently.

 

(46:12 – 46:22)

Find your little consistent thing that you can do. Trust in it and celebrate it. Ah, mic drop.

 

(46:23 – 46:26)

I’m ending it there, Lizzie. Thanks for joining me. Thank you, Alex.

 

 

 

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