Winter Wellness Challenge – Week 6

Fitness and the Mind-Body Connection

Welcome to week 6 of the Winter Wellness Challenge.

It is important to acknowledge that fitness can look very different for everyone. Which is why it is helpful to find out what is important to your body. Whether it’s a focus on consistent sleep or to get moving for 30 minutes, every behavior is matters and can contribute to a person’s overall fitness. Here are some things to consider when debunking fitness and finding the lifestyle that works best for you.   

Start by understanding the research on how exercise impacts your brain – you might be surprised. Watch Dr. John Ratey explain the research:

How Exercise Affects Your Body and Mind- (3 minutes)

Now that you understand why exercise is so good for you – let’s explore how to develop habits – Atomic Habits.  Change your habits – change your life!

Atomic Habits: How to Get 1% Better Every Day – James Clear (8 minutes)


This week pick a fitness area, nutrition, hydration, movement or rest, and identify what new habit you would like to create.  Using the rules below – design a new habit this week to increase your mental “fitness”.

FOCUS: Your consistency is more important than your intensity – put your energy into starting the habit – not the results.

3 Rules for Actually Sticking to Good Habits – James Clear
  1. You have to start with a version of the habit that is incredibly easy for you. It must be so easy that you can’t say no to doing it and so easy that it is not difficult at all in the beginning.
  2. You have to increase your habit each day, but in an incredibly small way.
  3. Even after increasing your habit, all repetitions must remain easy. The total habit should be broken down into easier pieces if needed.

Nutrition: Does your food provide you consistent energy throughout your day? There are specific foods that can impact the way your body operates on a day-to-day basis. Healthier choices can promote higher energy which can correlate with higher physical activity or movement. Your EAP benefit provides you with a free consultation with a Registered Dietitian or Holistic Health Coach – call and schedule your video consultation today.

Hydration: There has been a time we have all been educated on the importance of drinking water. It is crucial to know how many ways that hydration benefits the body. Any increase in your daily water intake is a success! The Importance of Hydration for Health and Fitness ( or watch: Why Drinking Water Is So Important – YouTube

Movement: Exercise causes you to breathe faster and more deeply. Deep breathing boosts how much oxygen is in the blood. The heart will beat faster, which sends more blood flow to the muscles and back to the lungs. Exercise supports the production of the neurotransmitter, serotonin. This science can explain why after a workout, it is natural to feel overall more positive! Exercise is an all-natural treatment to fight depression – Harvard Health We want to set ourselves up for success and find ways to enjoy what we are doing. 

Rest: It is recommended to sleep for at least seven to eight hours a day too so that your body has enough time to recover. Without this resting time, it’ll be a lot harder to achieve your goals. Importance Of Sleep In Fitness ( 

What is the step you will be taking to form a healthy habit this week?

“When you fall in love with the process rather than the product, you don’t have to wait to give yourself permission to be happy. You can be satisfied anytime your system is running.” – James Clear

Bonus Content:

View the C&FS EAP presentation on Chair Yoga:

Chair Yoga (30 minutes)

Learn about how to be more mindful about your eating in the C&FS EAP webinar:

Reset Nutrition and Mindful Eating (30 minutes)

Understanding more about the effects of body movement on your body:

How Exercise Affects Your Body and Mind – (15 minutes)

In case you missed it:

Winter Wellness Challenge – Week 1 – Prioritizing Self-Care

Winter Wellness Challenge – Week 2 – Managing Grief and Loss

Winter Wellness Challenge – Week 3 – Conflict: Proactive vs. Reactive

Winter Wellness Challenge – Week 4 – Managing the Stress of the Storm

Winter Wellness Challenge – Week 5 – Money Matters

Reach out:

As always – if you would like to discuss this topic, or any other concern, please reach out to C&FS EAP to speak with one of our staff for assistance.  Please call 716-681-4300 or complete the intake form here:

Request Services Now