Despite cancelled holidays and empty diaries, this summer can still be action-packed! We’ve been super-inspired by your Body Magic efforts at home, and we want to bring you even more motivation to keep moving with our month-long It’s a Kind of Magic challenge. From 15th June to 12th July, there’ll be a daily timetable of fitness fun online for members to follow – including daily exercise videos – to help you leave lockdown feeling stronger, fitter, slimmer and healthier.
But what exactly is Body Magic? We explain all you need to know below…
If you’ve never heard it before, the term ‘Body Magic’ might conjure up some amusing ideas. But we promise that it’s far from hocus-pocus! In fact, Body Magic is an important part of your Slimming World journey. This unique activity programme has been designed to encourage members to take small steps towards a more active lifestyle, alongside eating a healthy, balanced diet by following our flexible Food Optimising plan. It’s all about moving more and giving your health, fitness, wellbeing and weight loss a boost – which is where the magic happens!
When developing the Slimming World Body Magic programme, we had expert help from government physical activity advisor and psychologist Professor Ken Fox. He says:
“Slimming World has taken the ‘threat’ out of activity and devised a programme that can only have a very positive impact on the health, fitness and weight of members. This approach addresses psychological barriers, then behavioural ones, and ultimately helps members develop an intrinsic commitment to activity.”
What counts as Body Magic?
If it makes you breathe faster, feel warmer and gets your heart rate going, then it counts as Body Magic! For some people, Body Magic means going for a run. Others may feel that a walk is challenging enough. Some might choose weight training or a workout routine (look out for the new activity videos being uploaded to our member website this month). Outdoorsy types might enjoy cycling in the countryside or adventurous hikes, while others will be happiest indoors on an exercise bike or treadmill. Even vigorous cleaning, dancing and car washing count as Body Magic!
Our expert nutritionist, Dr Jacquie Lavin explains more:
“Just as members find a new groove with healthy eating, our activity programme helps members to find their own enjoyable, achievable and sustainable ways of building new active habits into their routine. Body Magic is the wonderful synergy that is created when both new healthy eating habits and regular exercise become an intrinsic part of members’ daily lives. Anything goes, from gardening or housework to walking, dancing, cycling or playing frisbee in the park or garden. There are loads of ways to get active that fit with your interests and your lifestyle – with absolutely no judgement from Slimming World about what type or how much activity you do.”
Small steps to Body Magic success
Body Magic is definitely not about jumping straight into the deep end. It’s about encouraging you to find activities that you enjoy, and take small steps towards working more movement into your everyday life.
For our members who love to have a goal to work towards, Slimming World Body Magic awards are a great incentive. You can log your activity to achieve shiny Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum Body Magic awards, gradually building your weekly Body Magic up until it becomes part of your new active lifestyle.
A cheerleading Community
Of course, Slimming World members are not alone on their Body Magic journeys. When you join a Slimming World group, you’ll get lots of new activity ideas and face-to-face encouragement to support these healthy lifestyle changes. We’ve seen some amazing examples of a brilliant Body Magic buzz in group – like Consultant Tracy Layfield’s Amesbury and Durrington groups, who’ve been cycling, dancing and kettlebell-ing their way to improved fitness.
For those who prefer to join Slimming World Online, there’s an inspiring Community of members waiting to cheer each other on. Member Lynn has been enjoying early morning cycle rides:
“I started off doing 5 miles but struggled with the hilly bits. Now, about three weeks on, I can get up the hills, have increased my ride to almost 7 miles most mornings, and my time has dropped from an hour to 45 minutes!”
All of our members also have access to an online library packed with fitness features – as well as the new It’s a Kind of Magic daily activity videos – and FIT logs to record Body Magic activity. Joining Slimming World will give you all the support and tools you need to boost those Body Magic levels.
Dr Jacquie explains more:
“Some of our members have a negative view of activity, feeling that it will be too challenging or uncomfortable for them. The Body Magic programme helps to support members to make that change and become more active by:
- removing psychological barriers and redefining what counts as activity (it doesn’t have to mean training for a marathon, wearing lycra or needing fancy equipment)
- building confidence and expertise
- motivating members to commit to a plan
- providing ideas and solutions to help members increase activity levels
- developing personal ‘foot out of the door’ strategies to make it easier to be active (this could be something like leaving your trainers by the door or adding activity to your diary)
- supporting members in turning new skills into a routine
- celebrating when members reach new milestones
- continuing to support members until active living becomes a lifestyle
“Exercise had never been a part of my life. I have multiple sclerosis (MS) and living in a wheelchair made exercising difficult. Then my Consultant, Lisa, told me that there were lots of workouts for wheelchair users online and suggested I give one of those a try. It was like something inside of me clicked. Although some of the exercises weren’t suitable for me, I was surprised by how much I could do, and by the end of the first session I felt more energetic and upbeat than I had in weeks. I’m aiming to get my Silver Body Magic award next… I feel unstoppable!”
Brilliant Body Magic benefits
Body Magic doesn’t just help support your weight loss. It’s also magic for your health, with moderate-intensity exercise helping to:
- lower blood pressure
- lower the risk of heart disease
- strengthen bones, joints and muscles
- improve posture
- reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and some cancers
There are so many other amazing benefits to leading a more active lifestyle, too. Lots of members say that being more active:
- gives them more energy
- improves their shape and posture
- improves their mood
- reduces stress levels
- helps them to sleep better
All incredible incentives to give it a go!
Social distancing rules permitting, Body Magic also presents lots of opportunities to spend quality time having fun with family, friends – and pets (there are lots of dogs loving their extra walks right now!). Or, if you prefer to go solo, going for that jog, walk or bike ride – or finding a quiet corner to roll out that workout mat – is a chance to grab some elusive ‘you time’.
“Until recently, I didn’t think exercise was for me, but adding a Body Magic boost to my days has really helped to keep me feeling mentally and physically strong during a stressful time… ‘Step by step’ has always been my approach to slimming, so I started doing a bit of Body Magic every day. As the weeks progressed, so did my fitness levels. These days, I jog 5km three to four times a week. Of course, my friends at group are behind me all the way!”
Let’s get started!
Getting started with Body Magic is simple – all you have to do is take that first step! And there’s no better time to do it than as our It’s a Kind of Magic challenge is kicking off. With Slimming World’s support, there really is nothing stopping you getting all those fantastic Body Magic benefits and leading an active lifestyle that you’ll love!
We’d love to see what’s getting you moving this month. Share your It’s a Kind of Magic moments with us on the blog or on social using #BodyMagicMoments.
Find out more about how to join Slimming World here.