As a part of my ‘removing barriers to exercise’ series, I present you with another reason why not to exercise that I hear quite often whilst talking to any prospective / existing clients. A lot of them seem to find exercising quite boring.
Why do some people love exercising yet some dread it? What makes people get up extra early every morning just so they can move? Do they have some sort of a secret?
The trick is to find something that keeps you moving whilst you are having fun at the same time. I wrote a recent post about finding your fitness calling. Once you find what actually makes you happy, you are very likely to stick to it and to be able to centre your fitness routine around it.
I train clients who are passionate about running. We don’t run during our PT sessions, but we do those exercises, that will enable them to run faster and longer (depending on their goals). I also train mums that have active kids and want to be able to run around them and have fun with them. They get some killer arms / backs during our workouts to ensure they can lift their kids safely as well as strong legs to keep them going for a while. Once you find out what makes you happy and see some logic behind your exercise regime that will bring you closer to it, you will actually start enjoying your training, as you will see it as a tool, not a mindless routine.
Another trick is to find a goal. Let’s say you are new to exercising and can’t find something concrete you enjoy at this point. It can all be really confusing at this stage, right? You keep on thinking: ,How will I enjoy all of those pointless workout sessions’ – I know, it can be really daunting to actually start. This is when you have to create a goal. It should be challenging yet achievable – something that you can work towards. General goals such as ‘getting stronger / fitter’ are in this case not enough. Think about a race you can sign up for. A challenging hike you could do with your friends or family. An active family vacation you would be able to enjoy. Something that will give a meaning to your training.
Once you come up with a concrete goal, you can start planning your workouts accordingly and even though you may not enjoy them at the beginning, they will bring you one stop closer towards your goal. And after a while, these workouts will become a part of your lifestyle. It happens. I have seen clients who kept on telling me: ,Once I finish that race, it will be all over and I will be in the ‘maintaining my fitness phase’ and won’t bother with these anymore’. And I always told me: ,Just hang in there and see what happens’. And guess what happened? They have realised working out has become a part of their lifestyles, it de-stresses them, gives them joy and makes them function better in their everyday lives. It also gives them a sense of accomplishment. You should see their faces when they talk about their prior fitness achievements – they are glowing and are so proud – and rightfully so!
Find something that is meaningful to you. Look at how you can train for it and most importantly – have fun. Because when you heart is in it, you are more than halfway there.