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With an already jam-packed schedule, setting aside an extra 20 minutes to work out can seem impossible. After all, most of your day is spent focusing on time-sensitive things like work, kids’ schedules, house chores, prepping meals for your family, and so on.
However, when placing everyone’s needs above your own, with no time for self-care, mental as well as physical health can begin to decline. Feelings of anxiety, depression, and exhaustion creep in and before you know it, becomes the “norm.”
The good news is, taking back less than a half hour from your hectic schedule, to sweat it out, will not only give your mental health a boost but your energy levels as well. Here, Jennifer Jacobs, CPT, and Beach Body Super Trainer unpacks why we tend to place others’ needs above our own and how to make ourselves a priority.
More often than not, there’s a feeling of guilt that surfaces when we prioritize ourselves. Whether it’s taking time for self-care such as working out, or a quiet morning walk to mentally prepare us for the day, we tend to minimize our needs when compared to others. But why? “We feel selfish,” says Jacobs. “We feel like we are doing something ‘bad’ because we are putting ourselves first.” As a result, we often end up putting our physical and/or mental wellness behind others.
In addition to that, “Some of us are busier now more than ever, as our working hours are becoming longer and the lines between work and home have become blurred,” says Jacobs. “Layer on top of that those that also juggle taking care of family and loved ones in addition to work.”
Although it might not come easy, “Putting our physical and mental wellbeing first is the best thing we can do for ourselves and those around us because when we feel better, we are in a better state of mind to make those around us feel better as well,” she adds. And in the long run, this makes for a healthier mental and physical state to live in.
Ell Woods said it best: “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy!” Beyond happiness, self-care creates a positive domino effect in our lives. It makes us feel better, gives us more energy, and provides a calmer and stable mindset resulting in physical and mental well-being — reduced stress, anxiety, and depression among many other things.
“Health is not merely defined by being disease-free,” Jacobs says. “As defined by the World Health Organization, health is a complete state of physical, mental, and social well-being. And unfortunately, by that definition, many of us would be considered unhealthy, as health is about more than just physical well-being.”
This is why 20 minutes of self care through exercise is the secret weapon to health both in the body and mind.
Although starting a fitness routine when your schedule is already at full capacity seems like the most inconvenient and inopportune thing to do, it’s for the best.
While fitness routines are typically thought of as a way to maintain your physical well-being, they also yield significant benefits to overall physical, mental, and social well-being. “By establishing a fitness routine, you can build a foundation for a healthy lifestyle, and now is always the best time to start,” Jacobs says.
Contrary to belief, you don’t need that much space, time, or equipment. “Once you have developed a routine you will have created an ability to train efficiently and effectively, anytime, anywhere, making it much easier to consistently maintain overall good health no matter the situation,” Says Jacobs.
The convenience factor of training from home is ideal in order to help establish or adopt a new routine to ensure that you make yourself a priority.
If you’re needing the motivation to get moving, Jacobs, a busy mother of two created Job 1, which consists of quick, effective, and efficient workouts that allow you to focus on yourself and feel better; all in the comfort of your own home.
“I wanted to reach as many people as possible, changing their mindset around their own health and wellness; Helping them lead healthier lives.” Says Jacobs.
The 20-minutes-a-day, 5-days-a-week functional training program helps you prioritize your health and fitness habits — no matter how much you have going on in your life. The program hits multiple muscle groups every single day for a total-body sweat that leaves you feeling stronger, invigorated, and accomplished; with three days of strength training, one day of endurance cardio, and one day of HIIT to help build your stamina, improve your energy, and dial-in the fat burn, with the option to add on a SPIN day with the Beachbody MYX bike.
“It’s so important that people realize that taking care of themselves is their number one priority and that they are worth it.” Says Jacobs.
Taking that first step can sometimes be challenging. “With Job 1, I am here to show you that it is doable and achievable.” She says. Job 1 is an approach to fitness that can easily be made part of your lifestyle no matter what level you are at.
One of Jacob’s favorite quick workouts is this three-move, 20-minute routine using her J METHOD’ resistance bands. Perform for as many rounds as possible in 20 minutes.
Looped Tricep Kickback (Unilateral)
Single-Leg Kickstand Romanian Deadlift (RDL)