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Jan. 5, 2012
7 Keys to Sustainable Fitness
At Clif Bar & Company, we commit to sustaining our health as much as sustaining our planet. Employee fitness has always been a crucial component of the company’s wellbeing, and while we enjoy pushing ourselves, injuries and setbacks can happen. So how do you maintain a consistent fitness routine? To inspire your post-holiday endeavors, here are a few pointers from the Clif Bar employee gym.

Sadie pose

1. Consistency trumps intensity
In the New Year, we’re apt to set ambitious goals to get on track. Unfortunately this traps us into all-or-nothing thinking. We are more likely to throw in the [gym] towel when we can’t live up to unrealistic standards. Instead, give yourself an easy win. Didn’t wake up at 6am for your run? Try a walk during your lunch break. Remember, some movement is better than nothing.

2. Get support
(We are not talking about sports bras here.) A training partner, a coach or the camaraderie of a class keeps you showing up and accountable. Teammates often push you harder than you could on your own. Even a dog that expects to be walked motivates you to get outside for a stroll. At the very least, we all need our family and friends that support our fitness priorities.

3. Less is more
Our busy lives cause tension in the muscles, anxiety in the nervous system and a drain on the adrenals. The body responds by slowing down to conserve energy. Holding stress and exercising is akin to pushing on the brakes and the accelerator at the same time. Support your efforts by including conscious relaxation to the training program. Restorative practices like yoga excavate stress and improve your athleticism.

4. Balance variety with routine
The body is remarkably adaptable. To progress we need to consistently train the skills of endurance or strength without compromising our mobility. Trying new forms of exercise can get you out of a rut, ensure your resilience and prevent boredom. A simple stretching and core strengthening routine can drastically improve your running or cycling.

5. Feed yourself well
Having a regular exercise schedule provides a positive feedback loop with healthy eating. If you commit to fitness, you become more mindful about when, what and how much you eat. As you push your limits you will feel what foods offer the best fuel. We built our company to sustain high endurance pursuits.

6. Surpass the scale
Weighing ourselves offers only one gauge of progress. You could also track your running mileage for stamina or weight lifted for strength gains. Most importantly, attend to how you feel. You may notice increased energy, improved sleep, more mental clarity and positive moods. We relish the innate rewards of exercise when we transcend fitness solely for weight loss.

7. Most importantly, have fun!
The Clif Bar employee gym often functions as an adult playground. Working out can feel like recess: a chance to blow off some steam, run around and act goofy. If we constantly think of exercise as a chore, then it’s hard to motivate. So have some fun with your fitness!

Sadie Chanlett-Avery serves as the in-house Yogi at Clif Bar. She blogs at and tweets at @yogisadie.
Posted by:
Chris Morell
Office Life

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We like getting our heart rates up, taking a big breath of fresh air, savoring delicious food. But we also love telling stories and here's where we type 'em up. (BTW, it works both ways; leave a comment—please and thank you.)

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