If I had a nickel for every person who told me their biggest obstacle to exercising is, “I don’t like to exercise,” I’d be rich. I have news for you, I don’t like it either. I like to run, but I don’t always like to strength train. But I know that it is good for me, I like how it makes me feel when I am done, and I like that it makes me stronger.
So how do we solve the problem of avoiding exercise because we don’t like it? That’s a tough one. The answer will most likely be different for each person. The fact of the matter is that you must view exercise as something that you have to do, like brushing your teeth, showering, working, mowing the lawn, etc. It’s non-negotiable if you want to be able to live your life on your terms. What does that mean? That means being able to do the activities you want to do without limitations. It means giving yourself the best chance of keeping up with your chosen hobbies, activities or kids, seeing your kids grow up and have their own kids, and of growing old with your spouse or significant other. Regular exercise has been proven to:
• Leave you feeling energized after the workout
• Increase bone density
• Improve cardiovascular efficiency
• Increase metabolic efficiency
• Decrease body fat
• Increase lean muscle mass
All of those benefits will lead to your being able to live your life according to your terms. Let’s face it, most of us are never going to “feel” like exercising. We are going to have to make the decision to do it anyway. The bonus here is that most of us like how we feel after we exercise. You know the feeling I’m talking about? That one of pride and accomplishment - that says “I did it!”? Yeah, that one. There’s nothing else like it.
I truly wish that I could tell you about some secret way - a mindset - that you could use to make yourself love exercise, but there is no such thing. I always stick with “honesty is the best policy”, and honestly, there are no secrets that will change your feelings about having to exercise. BUT - there are several ways to get yourself moving despite not liking to exercise.
8 Ways to Get Moving Today
- Choose a form of exercise you dislike the least.
- Choose a form of exercise you will actually do.
- Choose a form of exercise that is easily accessible (walking is a great option to start).
- Choose a form of exercise that is simple and won’t overwhelm you.
- Enlist help! Partner with a friend or family member and exercise together. Misery loves company, right?
- Start small! Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Seriously. If you aren’t exercising at all now, start by doing just 10-15 minutes 3 times/week. The more you move, the better you will feel and then you can increase the time spent exercising.
- Hire a professional to help you (coach, trainer, etc).
- Put your workouts on your calendar for the upcoming week and commit that you will keep that appointment with yourself.
I need to emphasize that there are no quick fixes. There are no magic potions. Anyone who tells you different is lying and most likely wants to take your hard-earned money. You will work hard. But that hard work will pay off - I promise.