Friday, September 16, 2011

Staying Fit While Writing

This week I read several blogs that got me thinking about my approach to exercise (I don't) and how to incorporate more fitness into my already packed day. If it comes to a choice between using my time for writing or taking a walk, writing usually wins. But since it's September and I'm working on my new fall goals, I've included getting more exercise.

My philosophy is that ANY amount of exercise is better than none. I don't plan on running marathons or anything. Although even I have to admit that playing Wii Fit is pretty feeble. (Hey, there are fitness benefits. I read a study.)  And much as I'd like to point out that climbing stairs while carrying a full load of laundry is working my muscles, it's more part of ordinary activity than fitness.

What I have figured out is that I can connect exercise to writing. When I go for a walk (all the sane members of my family are watching TV), I bring along my ipod and listen to a favourite writerly podcast. I like Wordplay podcasts (James Dashner, Nathan Bransford and J Scott Savage) and The Creative Penn with Joanna Penn.

What do you do to stay fit? Any good podcast recommendations?


  1. I walk or run - it's good for me and the dogs - but it always seems to be the first thing to go when time gets tight. Usually just the act of walking or running lets my thoughts run and I can do a lot of writerly thinking. I've never tried podcasts, but they sound great. As for other forms of exercise, I hope you saw my potato exercise on Monday's post :)

  2. This first week of university I've been walking all over campus, so that would be my exercise! Although I do go to the gym as well when I have the time.

  3. What I've been doing lately...and I actually LOOK forward to it because I can walking on the treadmill at a high incline but only around 2.5 mph and I just set my book or my e-reader on the lip and walk for about an hour!

    I probably could do much longer than an hour because the time flies by when I'm reading..but I've found that if I have that book to look forward to reading..than I get excited about going to the gym!

  4. Walks--I love my walks. In fact, that's what I should be doing right now :-) And when the weather's bad, I pull out our rebounder (mini-trampoline). It's kind of fun...

    Haven't tried listening to podcasts, although it sounds like a good idea!

  5. It doesn't take much for me to stay in my current condition - which is to say flabby. Getting fit? I keep telling myself I'm going to exercise. If only that would burn calories and build muscles, I'd be all set.

  6. Good for you, Meghan! I think building exercise into your daily routine is the way to go.

    Susanna, I used to walk my dog all the time, but now she has a bad leg and can't go, so I feel guilty going out walking without her. Sometimes I go with my daughter as she inline skates (definitely pushes me to walk faster).

    Kenda, lately I've been bouncing on the trampoline with my daughter -- it's fun!

    Ha! B.E., if only writing action scenes would bring the physical benefits the characters get, that would be something.

  7. Yes, exercise is SO important. I know I cannot spend hour after hour in this chair without inviting health problems. I walk and do some modest weight lifting. I'm not a natural athlete and at times I have to make myself, but it's one of the prices I have to pay to be/remain a writer.

    I'm having trouble posting on certain blogger blogs these days, and yours happens to be one. So this will post as anon if it posts, but I am Marcia (Marcia Hoehne). :)

  8. Swell post and a good tip. I usually listen to audio books, but I should check out some podcasts and now I will:)

  9. Marcia, that inability to post comments happens to me sometimes too (even on my own blog), but then it goes away. Weird!

    I definitely agree that it's often an effort to make myself exercise and stay in better shape. Weight lifting is a good idea, I've heard.

    Middle grade ninja, if you find any good writerly podcasts, let me know!

  10. This is so funny that you should post this (especially after the email I just sent you!). Yes, exercise is one of my keys to inspiration. That and chocolate of course.


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