What is a movement-based lifestyle?

We currently live in a world where “life” is mostly sedentary, and “exercise” is the one or two hours a day we set aside to fit in some movement. Research is showing, more and more, that this approach doesn’t meet our bodies’ need for movements.

A movement-based lifestyle is one that keeps all of you moving—from your arms and legs to your microbiome—gives you large doses of “Vitamin Nature,” and “Vitamin Community.” It is the addition of movement back into life.

1 I get movement in first thing in the morning.

I walk with a friend, so that my “movement time” is also my “coffee with a friend” date. Stacking my life this way — getting movement and something else I need/love to do — is key to a movement-based lifestyle.

I always wear minimal shoes. A wide, flexible, and totally flat shoe means when I move, more of me is moving!

2 Our family uses low tables and the floor instead of sitting in couches and chairs.
3 I have a dynamic workstation (I don’t work in the same position all the time), and take movement breaks at my desk.
4 I use objects in and around my home to facilitate movement.

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5 I break up my workday with chores.

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6 I take calls and do errands on foot, often at the same time.
7 The bulk of our family time is outside, moving (on this day we went to a park; other days we’ll go to the woods or the mountains, and we have fun exploring the cities we visit in our travels).

8 Some of my work can be done via my smartphone, and I make sure that when I am calling or emailing from my mobile, I’m doing it on the move.

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9 We typically walk wherever we go—if we’re not going to walk the whole way there, then we park at a distance and walk the rest of the way.

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FAQ

Why do you live like this? Aren’t you taking a step backward by getting rid of your furniture?

I know, getting rid of your furniture seems freaky, but right now the United States alone spends over 100 BILLION dollars on obesity and other ailments stemming from poor movement habits. Less furniture simply means more movement, more muscular work, and more calories expended while I’m living my regular life. I, like you, don’t have time to exercise more. I have two kids, a full-time career, a marriage, friendships, and hobbies. I’ve learned that I can stack my life – get movement during my time at work, with friends and with family. I spend lots of time outdoors and, at 40 years old, I’ve never felt better. If you’re asking for a more scientific answer, read Move Your DNA, which explains how your body is affected by every single movement you do—not just the ones you do at the gym but the ones you do (and don’t do) on the couch and at work, looking at a screen and even when you sleep!

What’s the easiest place to start?

We’ve found there are two places you spend a lot of your time: “at work” and “in shoes.” For that reason, starting with either of these will give you lots of movement bang for your buck. If you want to start with your feet, check out Whole Body Barefoot; if you want to get more movement all day at work, read Don’t Just Sit There for pointers.

I’m all in—what’s the fastest way to create a Nutritious Movement–based life?

The fastest approach is a whole-body, whole-lifestyle one, where you can approach one aspect of a movement-based lifestyle at a time. Download our Macronutrient Pack Guide and you’ll read how our micronutrient exercises facilitate a movement-based (i.e. nutritious) lifestyle, and vice versa. You’ll find the products and exercises described in the guide in our shop.

What do you do about guests who are elderly or disabled?

The great thing about a dynamic living space is that it’s customizable. You can keep a couple of foldable chairs and bring them out when they’re needed. We have a window seat that anyone can sit on if they want, or they can use a variety of bolsters and blankets to create a seating arrangement that’s perfect and comfortable for them. Check out the tour of my house so you can see the options we keep on hand.

What about schools? I’m worried about my children not moving well.

I agree that a fundamental problem with our schooling systems is that they don’t provide adequate movement. For most of us, this is where our sedentary habits were fully developed. I’ve made the decision to put our pre-school/kindergarten-aged children in an all-outdoor, nature school (similar schools are popping up all of the time). Other ideas include supplementing traditional schools with after-school nature programs, and spending the bulk of your weekend family time in nature, moving. For more ideas on how to get kids moving, read the “Kids and Babies” section on my blog.

Want more examples?

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Read all of the articles on stacking your life for a movement-based lifestyle on the blog.

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Visit my Instagram account, where I post examples of my movement-based lifestyle in action.

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