Jan 1 2012
Starting a new fitness routine can be like intimacy within a long-term relationship. You want it all, you deserve it all, but sometimes you have to mix things up to keep it interesting and exciting.
If it is not a rewarding, motivating, and healthy relationship you may find yourself looking at what other activities have to offer. Before you know it you may wake up to find yourself in bed with a tub of Ben & Jerry’s and a good episode of “Dancing with the Stars.”
Instead of detrimental ‘fitness infidelity,’ try these suggestions to rekindle your love of fitness.
Making Fitness Fun
The truth is, if fitness isn’t fun, you aren’t going to do it. It doesn’t matter how much guilt you lay on yourself for that piece of cheesecake or that extra glass of wine.
Fitness is never meant to be punishment for enjoying a decadent meal or the tempting allure of your favorite treats.
Motivating yourself with guilt over something you truly enjoy and punishing yourself with exercise is only going to create your inevitable rebellion instead of allowing you to embrace fitness to enhance your life. The key is to find a way to fall in love with fitness, to want it just as much as you want sinfully decadent food and drink, to look forward to it and daydream about it just as much as you would a new lover.
Innovative health clubs understand the importance of environments that make you want to be there. More importantly than that though, is your own mindset. Luckily, this is one area that we each have complete control over.
Don’t fall into the trap of ‘furrowed-brow fitness’ where fitness is a chore that must be done with a serious face, a specific number of repetitions and a monotonous routine. If you enjoy running on a treadmill, then by all means do it. But if you feel like a hamster on a wheel, don’t feel as though you must run with the pack!
Matchmaking: Finding the Right Type of Fitness for You
I must confess that I detest running. There was a time that I was completely devoted to my early morning runs. I thrived on the adrenaline rush that came with them, even to the point of becoming a triathlete and a marathon runner. As my life changed, so did my preferences.
Now, when I run I think of all the things I “should” be doing to care for my family or build my business. I count the minutes, the seconds, watch TV, read a magazine or blast my music to get through it. If I am forced to run on a treadmill, I do all of those at the same time just to distract myself. “Distraction techniques” like this completely disengage your mind from your body and diminish the mental benefits of exercise. Luckily, I’m not forced to run on a treadmill. The choice is mine and I choose not to run any longer.
Playing Out Instead of Working Out
I want to have passion and enjoy every activity I do in life. I want exercise to be like recess instead of another thing to cross off on my to-do list. As children, we looked forward to the playground, playing foursquare, tag, kickball or anything to escape the tedious tasks performed at our desks.
Revive that excitement as an adult through unique forms of exercise that keep you motivated by entertaining you. Try dancing, hiking, playing tag with the kids, hula hooping, or a group exercise class where you feel great energy, a refreshing atmosphere, and a hip vibe, making it as entertaining as it is healthy.
The Take-Away: When Fitness Is Fun, You Will Stick With It
Exercise enlightens the mind, toughens the body and brightens the spirit. A balanced program includes cardiovascular activity, strength training and flexibility. The overarching theme is to engage in activities about which you are passionate. Movements that allow you to feel provocative, fun, elegant and powerful are going to keep you motivated and engaged.
Enjoyment, fun and bliss are the prime motivators for successful, long-term behavioral change. The body craves new, adventurous ways to move. Love and respect those cravings by finding a fitness program that provides you with a positive experience.
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