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Stress Management

Let’s Make Movement Enjoyable!

Sybil Cooper, WellTheory Health Coach

You Move Everyday, Why Not Enjoy It?

From the time that we wake up to the time we go to sleep, we are moving. We move to get dressed, prepare and eat meals, to run errands, to go to work, to take care of loved ones, and a whole lot more.

Since we are moving throughout the day, why not make it more enjoyable? More fun? Or maybe more exciting?

Maybe it’s dancing in the kitchen while you listen to music and cook. Or maybe it’s taking a short walk to connect with your partner, dog, and/or kids and catch up on your days. Or maybe it’s having a competition with a friend or partner racing to see who can get their grocery list items first!

You don’t need to write this down, but what might be some ways you can make movement more enjoyable, fun, or exciting?

Take a quick moment to think about it. We want you give you the opportunity to brainstorm a few ideas on your own before you read the list in the next section. =)

Different Ways to Make Movement Enjoyable

Below are a few different ways to make movement enjoyable. Note any that resonate with you and dismiss any that do not. This is not an inclusive list, so as you read through this, if you have a spark of inspiration or ideas of your own, write them down!

Pair It

Pair movement with something else you enjoy or have fun doing.


  • Catching up on a favorite podcast on a short after-work walk.
  • Watching your favorite TV series while stretching.

Buddy Up

Do it with someone you enjoy spending time with or someone who is passionate about it and can get you excited about it.


  • Walking to or playing at the park with your kids.
  • Having your friend who has played pickleball for the past few years teaches you and a few other friends how to play.

Non-Food Incentives and Rewards

Create fun, non-food incentive or reward for either right after you move, or for a longer term reward after accomplishing a specific movement goal.


  • Getting to watch 1 episode after you bike 30 mins.
  • Buy that new piece of clothing you’ve been wanting if you walk 2mi 4x/week for 8 weeks.
  • Tip: make the reward just as satisfying if not more, than the other thing that you’d rather be doing than movement. The more satisfying, the more you’ll look forward to it.

Gratitude and Appreciation

Appreciate and have gratitude for what movement ability you DO have and what you CAN do vs what you CANNOT do.


  • I am thankful my joint pain is low today and that I am able to walk to my mailbox and back.

Create an Association With It

As you move, focus and attach the movement with the desired outcome, the positive ways you’ll feel after, or your ‘why.’


  • I really want to spend time with my grandkids and I feel so much less muscle pain and after I stretch — stretching allows me to spend more pain-free time with them. Stretching = less pain + quality time with grandkids.

Make It a Competition

For some, there is nothing like a good competition to light a fire to do something. If that’s you, this might be a great option to compete against yourself or others in your movement targets.


  • With family, friends or others, see who can get the most steps after one month.

Help, Serve, and Support Others

There are many people and organizations needing help, and some of those things might include movement with it.


  • Doing yard work, serving at a food bank, walking to get mail for a neighbor, or doing support walks or runs.

Take Action: Identifying What You Enjoy

Handout: Making Movement Enjoyable

In this activity, you will only write out a few ways to try making movement easier, but we invite you to copy these questions, or keep a copy of your questions and answers, and revisit this activity in the future to continue expanding your enjoyable movement options.

Tip: You are looking to walk away with an imperfect starting list! Treat this as a first draft and that it is something that can be edited, revised and updated at any time. Write out whatever comes to mind knowing you can revise and update this later.


  1. List 3 things that are important to you in your life. Examples: Family & Friends, Adventure, Community & Connection, Service, Leaving Legacy, Growth & Learning.
  2. List 4–5 general things you enjoy or that are fun (like hobbies, music, tv shows/movies, podcasts, etc.).
  3. Next, put an * next to any items that you might be able to reasonably do or pair with different types of movement. (Example: walk & listen to podcast/talk to a friend).
  4. List 2 movement specific activities you do NOT enjoy and briefly write out why.
  5. Reflect back on the 1-3 movement options you identified previously, are they types of movement you enjoy? If not, how might you make them more enjoyable? Are there other movement options that you would enjoy more that are also accessible for you to do?
  6. What is one way you’d like to try out making movement more enjoyable this next week?

How Can We Help?

Finding the support you need can be a daunting task. If you'd like guidance on identifying the right care for you, send us a message and we’ll respond via email within 48 hours.
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