3 Ways To Make Exercise More Fun
The number one reason people don’t work out? They hate it. And no one can blame them. Sweating can be a nasty experience, and sore muscles aren’t pleasant for anyone. Plus, the results of a workout take a lot longer to surface than the pain, discomfort and inconvenience of suffering through one.
So for many of us, throwing in the towel is a lot more appealing than powering through. It can take years of giving up before finding a workout routine you like, and even then, you have to peel yourelf off the couch most days to muster the motivation to get active.
However, working out needs is an important part of any healthy lifestyle. Not necessarily hardcore, boot camp, three-hours-a-day workouts, but some form of physical activity, whether it’s walking briskly, playing tennis or attending a yoga class.
The chemicals released during exercise boost your self-esteem and improve your outlook on life, making you a happier version of yourself. Many successful stories are stuffed with people who thought exercise was their worst enemy until they forced themselves back on the horse and realized it was the one thing that could make them their own best friend.
And that’s a great segue into my first of three tips to take the “work” aspect out of “working out.”
1. Do it for you
Failure to stick to an exercise schedule is usually due to lack of motivation. But what’s more motivating than knowing that every mile you run is for you, and no one else?
No one can make you healthy but you. And no one can make you want to be healthy but you, either. So set little goals and reward yourself when you reach them. Trying to lose weight? For every three pounds you shed, treat yourself to a night out at the movies with your best friends, or a delicious, heart-healthy meal at your favorite restaurant.
Working on earning a promotion at work? Use your exercise time to amp yourself up with focus. A simple mantra of, “I deserve this,” will give you the strength to power forward, and make pushing yourself to the end of the workout a goal to accomplish, not a fight to battle through.
2. Take it easy
There’s no reason to bust your butt. No matter how much you’re trying to lose, tone, or change, diving face-first into a boot camp-style workout plan can cause burnout, making you hate getting in shape more than you hate your current shape.
If getting started on a workout regime is proving more disappointment than payoff, start by signing up for a low-impact activity with a friend. Gradually shifting yourself from a stagnant lifestyle to an active one will make the process more rewarding, and a lot more fun.
Believe it or not, you don’t need to run five miles to see results in your body. Consistent movements like those in a water aerobics or gentle yoga class engage muscles and burn off calories just as well as a hardcore spin class or cardio workout would.
Sometimes, the most difficult part of working exercise into your day is… well, working it into your day! Why make it more of a challenge than it needs to be? Setting realistic goals makes for realistic achievements.
3. Talk to yourself
Don’t let the yogis have all the fun. You can make activities you’ve previously hated—running, the elliptical, or weight training—a blast by being your own personal trainer.
I’m sure you’ve heard that making noises while you exercise helps the relieve tension and increase focus. It’s true, and there’s no reason to be embarrassed by your grunts and moans.
However, did you know that laughter fights cancer, and speaking out loud to yourself is the most effective way to get motivated to do something?
If you’re trying to make it four miles on the treadmill, talk yourself through the agonizing last mile and a half. Out loud. I don’t care if you’re at the gym, do it. Encouragement only!
And if you feel silly, laugh.
What it all comes down to is simple: Happiness is health, and health doesn’t have to be hard. Always keep yourself in mind, and be kind.
And, of course, have fun!
This is a guest post from Dr. Mike Tremba. Dr. Tremba has failed (and overcome) every excuse to not exercise. Through what he’s learned, he is able to share with others in order to help them reach their weight loss goals. Through the work on his Truth About Abs Review, and his site at www.NaturalWeightLossTruth.