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How to Find Time and Energy to Exercise Despite Physical Limitations

by | Mar 27, 2017

“It’s like 1000% or nothing at all.” ~Rachelle

Rachelle was in a snowboarding accident when she was 15 years old that cost her the use of both of her legs. After 18 years of battling both illness and body image issues, she is finally in a place where she is healthy and has a better relationship with food, and she’s ready to feel strong and fit again. She’d also love to lose 20 lbs.

Rachelle believes that being in a wheelchair makes getting enough exercise too difficult and time consuming to be practical for her busy life. She’s juggling both a family and a career as a lawyer, so it’s clear that both time and physical limitations create barriers for her workout habits. After a little digging in our conversation though, it starts to become clear that Rachelle’s psychological barriers are the main obstacle.

All her life Rachelle has been ambitious. Her previous attempts at getting fit involved intense exercise programs with personal trainers and sports like boxing––things that take a ton of time, energy and resources. She knows that with her career and family, activities like this cause her to burn out. But when she compares herself to her husband who has lost 20 lbs in three months she believes she needs to be doing intense training like this in order to see results.

Together Rachelle and I work to reframe her goals in a way that makes them compatible with her work and family life, while still allowing her to lose weight. We discuss specific mental exercises she can do to help maintain this perspective (often the hardest part) and give her the cognitive flexibility to be more creative in finding new ways to be active.

Wish you had more time to listen to the podcast? I use an app called Overcast (no affiliation) to play back my favorite podcasts at faster speeds, dynamically shortening silences in talk shows so it doesn’t sound weird. It’s pretty rad.


Related Links:

Mindful Meal Challenge


Peloton bike



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