February's theme was movement. This is one that I wanted to be very careful to be broad. In my Facebook post in my group I wrote, "Remember our yearly theme is self-care.... You are not 'bad' if you miss moving or don't achieve your goal. Movement can be anything--exercise, stretching, yoga, parking further away, physical therapy, etc."
How did I do?
In January, when my focus was sleep, I worked out (based on my app on my phone/watch) 11 times. Not bad! It was once for every three days. It was decent. In February, when my goal was movement, I worked out 16 times! This is a notable improvement. In fact, my first week, I worked out 5 times in a row. Since the pandemic I haven't felt comfortable working out in a gym, so I stuck to walks and using some beginner workout videos I bought in a program around Christmas.
What I learned
I love that in my own group, I had to identify everything that counted as movement. This helped me mentally increase my flexibility. I think a lot of times, we don't give ourselves as much credit as we should. But this flexibility helped me give myself more credit. There were a couple days that I just wasn't feeling it. Reminding myself that stretching counted got me downstairs with my exercise mat for 15 minutes of stretching. How did I feel afterward? Much better. Glad I'd done it.
I was diagnosed with juvenile onset of rheumatoid arthritis when I was 10. It really started acting up when I was 14. And it continued almost unchecked in its destructive path until I started gold (a treatment given by injection) when I was 16. Still, I have flair ups, stiffness, good days and bad ones. Though, since my late 20s, it just hasn't been as bad as it was when I was younger. But I *must* have flexibility in my workouts.
I've also learned that apps are stupid. One day, I can go on a walk and my watch will give me credit for every step. Other days it almost doesn't give me credit at all. Seriously, yesterday I went on a walk and it gave me credit for 34 minutes of exercise. Today's 20 minute walk gave me one minute of credit. One. Ridiculous. So I try to watch for other measures on the app as well. In the summary section, it gives me up or down arrows based on various measures: move goal (cal/day), average minutes exercised, stand hours, stand minutes, walking pace, and distance. In January, move, exercise, and distance were all down arrows. But after my efforts, move and exercise are both up and distance has improved by 0.1, even though it's still 0.1 off of my yearly average.
These measures give me such calm even on days that I didn't get a workout. I may find that my move goal was higher than normal, or my exercise exceeded my current average or that elusive distance goal was above the norm. Noting these successes help me stay focused on movement, which is ultimately the goal.
We also jumped through several hoops to add a year membership to our current recreation center pass. Our rec center has been closed for renovation and will finally be open March 20. (I'll get my 2nd Covid vaccine on the 19th.) With two vaccines on board, I feel totally comfortable using the gym again. But because we'd paused our membership and were taking advantage of a sale, we had to have the rec center director help us. It took a few phone calls and some effort, but I think this was a "movement" success too, because it's setting our whole family up for more movement for a year plus all in a wonderfully redone facility.