The Inspired Running community is almost halfway through a 10 minute a day challenge.
The challenge is pretty simple: complete 10 minutes of exercise (running, walking, whatever feels good) every day between Thanksgiving and New Years Eve.
In fact, it’s so simple that it’s easy to assume it doesn’t really matter.
I mean, can 10 minutes a day really make a difference?
Can 10 minutes a day change your life?
When you’re conditioned to seeing change as a huge commitment followed by sweeping action, 10 minutes a day seems pretty inconsequential. Maybe even pointless.
And yet the 10 minutes every day, the small steps repeated, is where the magic of change happens.
We want to celebrate the moment the reluctant runner crosses the finish line of the marathon and finally sees herself as a real runner.
We’re eager to praise the pre-diabetic woman in her 50′s who makes a commitment to her health, loses 60 lbs and feels healthy at last.
And while all of these moments are worth celebrating, they aren’t the moments where the actual change happens.
Change is built on a foundation of gradual progress. Small steps repeated until you finally reach your goal.
Reaching the goal is simply the byproduct of taking those small steps over, and over and over again. Even when you have no evidence that it matters.
When you still haven’t lost the weight, but you’re changing the way you interact with food and treat your body.
When running a mile still feels like a struggle, but you go out there and put your shoes on anyway.
That’s when change happens. Those are the moments worth celebrating.
While 10 minutes might seem inconsequential, insignificant, it opens the doorway to bigger steps.
It helps create habits.
It helps shift identity.
It helps build a foundation you can grow.
If you can make 10 minutes a habit, you can make 15 minutes a habit, and then 20 and then 30.
But if you want to change, you have to first start where you are and build from there.
Celebrate the small steps you take today that are paving the way for the moment of celebration.
Still not sure 10 minutes matters?
Some interesting facts to consider:
- Researchers at Northern Arizona University found that after 10 minutes on a stationary bike students experienced improved energy & mood. A 20 minute workout provided only a tiny boost over the 10 minute lift.
- British researchers found that 20 minutes a Week of moderate activity (golfing, walking, doing chores) was all it took to significantly reduce the risk of psychological distress.
What some of the challenge participants say:
“ Done! AND…Thank you for this Challenge or it would NOT have gotten done. Very dark, cold and drizzly here …but hey…10 min. OK! Decided to just go for it…. Ended up with almost 30. And learned something VERY important: I don’t give up once out there….I give up BEFORE going!!!”
“I’m so appreciating this challenge—it’s about getting out there, no matter what and no matter what time.”
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