Finding the Best Exercise Routine for Your Minimalist Lifestyle


The Holiday season is often a time where we find ourselves overindulging and committing to a few extra pounds as hibernation sets in. We embrace a time of cozy and calm, hours spent with family around the table, and countless baking nights making our favorite traditional recipes. However, as we begin to creep out of the cold wintery months and head into the New Year, we often consider changing up our routines.

With all of the deliciousness consumed over the course of November and December, one of the first lifestyle changes people make is to implement an exercise routine in hopes of shedding the few pounds gained over the Holiday Season. However, many set themselves up for failure during this time of year because they do not know how to select the right exercise routine for them. It can be easy to go with the routine that friends or family are doing, but this may not be the best routine for you. If you dive into an exercise regimen that does not match your minimalist lifestyle or personality type, you may find yourself in burnout before you even begin your practice. In order to find the right workout for you, consider a few of the helpful tips below.

Starting at Home or at Work

The greatest component of creating a minimalist workout is to establish a basic routine you can always come back to. This routine is most typically an at-home practice that is readily available and does not require a lot of time, space, or equipment. A few examples of this exercise may include yoga, lifting hand weights, Pilates, or a simple stretching routine. It should not be overly complicated or overly structured. Just have a go-to at-home exercise plan for the days you cannot or simply do not feel like putting a lot of mental energy or time into exploring another form of exercise.

You may also consider getting your exercise throughout the day by choosing simple options for a bit more cardio. You may choose to take the stairs instead of the elevator, take a quick walk over your lunch break, or do a few stretches if you tend to sit at a desk most of the day. Minimalists often opt for creating easy opportunities for movement throughout the day, rather than making a scheduled exercise routine that makes life’s schedule more difficult to navigate.

No Trend-Setting Required

Another major component when pinpointing your exercise routine based on a minimalist perspective is going with what fits your personality and lifestyle rather than going with the latest exercise fad or trend. It is important to find a routine that you feel comfortable in, makes you feel good, and comes somewhat naturally to you. Exercise is not so much about pushing yourself until exhaustion, but pushing yourself within the limits of your lifestyle. For example, if you tend to work long days sitting at a desk, you may find you need a little added movement in your workouts such as with running, cycling, etc. However, if you are fairly active throughout the day, you may find yoga to be helpful to calm the body and mind while still allowing you to burn calories and stay in shape.

Your personality and interests also determine your exercise choice. For example, if you are drawn to the fine arts, classical music, intimate spaces, and quieter hobbies such as reading, you may find classical ballet, a meditative workout such as yoga, or even a long hike to compliment your personality and interests. However, if you prefer to be in large crowds, attend several gatherings throughout the year, and thrive on activities with others, then you may be more inclined to take to a cycling class, visit a CrossFit gym, or try a team sport. The exercise options are endless and new workout trends popup constantly claiming to be the next best thing! However, as a minimalist, you should not always embrace the abundance of exercise options, especially when they do not fit your style of living. Remaining true to who you are and what exercise fits your personality and lifestyle best is the key to maintaining an exercise routine overall.

Once You Have Found What Works for You

Once you have found what works for you, it is important to start small and take baby steps to achieving your goals and overall lifestyle growth when it comes to your exercise routine. Often times we want to rush into an activity, a sport, a practice, and try to match up to everyone else in the room. We may even change our daily routines and lifestyles in order to focus on the new and improved workout plan we have chosen. We adjust our schedules, we change our diet and not always for the better, we cancel plans with those that matter most to us, and we put our other important pieces of our lives on hold to pursue being the best at the program we select. However, this is not the minimalist’s way. Although pushing ourselves is important, when we overcomplicate our exercise strategy, it no longer is simple or easy to show up for.

Minimalists see the value in creating an exercise plan that is easy to follow, matches their personality, and fits nicely into the lifestyle they have created for themselves. They can simply show up, do what they love with little hassle, and leave the workout feeling as though they accomplished something great for themselves and their health; no fancy gadgets, lots of money, or a life dedicated to getting fit required.

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