"Find What Feels Good to Your Body, and Do It" with Hannah Setzer (WHM Series Part 3)
Welcome to the third and final part of the Women's History Month series, featuring health and fitness tips from real women who find ways to prioritize their health and fitness in the midst of their busy lives!
Today, we're talking to Hannah Setzer, movement enthusiast, mom, business owner, and creator of @FeedingTube.Fitness on Instagram! In this post, Hannah shares how she helps her family stay active, the role that movement has played in recovering from 60+ surgeries, and the importance of listening to your body. Keep reading for Hannah’s tips!
"Find What Feels Good to Your Body, and Do It"
Q: Why is fitness important to you?
Intentionally moving my body daily has literally changed every aspect of my life. I am more focused. I am less stressed out. I have better coping mechanisms. It has brought our family together. It has afforded me incredible opportunities to meet awesome people, and has opened my eyes to the entire adaptive athlete community. Moving has given me a purpose in life. I strive to make movement accessible and inclusive to all, and for brands and companies to do the same.
Q: How do you make time for fitness on a day to day basis?
Movement is non-negotiable to me. It also looks different every day. Some days, I'm in so much pain with my feeding tube that intentional movement looks like walking laps around my house because I can't manage anything else. Some days it looks like running five miles if my body allows it. I include my family in my movement practice. My husband and I work out together. I take my kids with me on walks daily where they ride their bikes, skateboards, scooters, whatever, but we are outside moving our bodies together. We play a lot of front yard football and front yard kickball at our house. I continue to be the reigning champion of Knock-Out and Horse on our basketball court. Honestly, some days walking up and down the aisles at Walmart grocery shopping is my movement that day. It is all intentional if we can shift our mindset. Moving our heart and mind and soul is just as important as moving our physical bodies.
Q: What motivates you to move your body on the days you don't feel like it?
At this point, I'm four years into my daily intentional movement practice, and the sheer fact that I'd break the streak motivates me. But also, I get so many messages daily on Instagram from followers telling me that I inspired them to move that day, and the cycle continues because then they inspire me to move!
Q: What is a setback you've faced with your health and fitness? What did you learn, and what advice would you share with someone going through a similar challenge?
Literally every day feels like a setback. Since starting my movement journey on January 1, 2018, I have had my spleen removed, major dental work done, teeth implants, and had my jaw broken and had surgery to put it back together. I have moved intentionally every day since then. My feeding tube hurts constantly. I'm in chronic pain. I have learned to trust my body, and move how it tells me it wants to move daily. Some days I wake up and just know, "'I'm going for a run today," and my body knows that, and tells me that, and I do it. Some days I wake up and my body says, "good luck doing anything because I'm in 10/10 pain," and I make laps from my couch to my bed. I truly believe movement is medicine. I would not be as healthy as I am without moving daily. I have had 60+ surgeries in my life and every single doctor and surgeon has been utterly SHOCKED at how quickly and healthily I have recovered from my spleen surgery and my jaw surgery because I moved. I have pictures of myself in the hospital the day my spleen came out, and the day after of me doing laps on the hospital floor. Find what feels good to your body, and do it. I have had to start over SO MANY TIMES. I have been able to chest press 20 lbs dumbbells and then have had a setback and have started over at 5 lbs again. Don't be afraid to start over. It's not a loss. You aren't a failure for having to start over. You're brave because you continued to move. The bigger the setback, the better the comeback.
Q: What’s a favorite fitness or wellness product, app, or resource that you can share?
Lately, I've been loving my Monkey Feet from Animalhouse Fitness, my jump rope from Walmart, and my own book, 30 Days of Movement that can be found on Amazon!
Q: What are you currently working on?
I frequently host WayBetter challenges on the WayBetter app, and the next one starts May 28, 2022! Here's the link: https://waybetter.com/partner/games/1758.
Q: Are there any other tips you want to share?
This sounds so simple but it's true--you get better at what you practice. If you see someone on social media killing it at pull ups or on jump rope, it's because they've practiced. This isn't their first day. If you want to get better at something, you're going to have to practice. I have spent too much time being mad that I can't headstand as much as someone else...but I also don't practice every day! If you want to get good at something, you just gotta put in the work. And, if you don't want to be excellent at headstands--then who cares! Appreciate that someone else has worked so hard to do it and move on. I'm all for celebrating others over competing with others.