We've all read hundreds of times of the importance of exercise, especially as we grow older. Who isn't familiar with the expression "sitting is the new smoking?" I won't go into the nitty gritty details of why sitting is so bad for us, except to mention it has been implicated in many conditions, from heart disease to nerve damage. And while our society is more sedentary these days, I think those of us who are writers have to pay special attention to the matter.
I don't love to exercise and won't initiate an exercise session on my own, which is why I take aerobic and yoga classes, either in person or via Zoom, three to five times a week. And I go for a walk occasionally. Luckily, there are many forms of exercise available to us, so we can choose those we really like. There's swimming, Pilates, dancing, skating, bike riding, various sports and working out in a gym to mention a few.
But the benefits of working out and staying in shape are significantly lost if we sit in front of a computer for hours at a time. It's essential that we get up and move every twenty minutes or so. Just get movin'. Go downstairs. Get a drink of water in the kitchen. (And bypass the chocolate.) Walk around your office for a few minutes. Do a few stretching exercises.
Having a pet helps keep us moving. I remember how my cat Sammy used to make his special sound, telling me he wanted a few treats or some attention. But now that Sammy's gone, I need to remember to get up and move on my own.
For those of us who get so involved in the creative process and forget to come up for air, you can set your alarm to remind you to get up and stretch. Or move. Sometimes moving around helps inspire new story ideas. Some of my plot problems are solved as I walk around my community.
When I sit too long, rising to my feet can be painful. There's no question that I feel better after exercising and moving about. If only I didn't have to do it so often! But that's the way the cookie crumbles, as they used to say. Moving and exercising are as essential to our well-being as eating a healthy diet and getting enough sleep.