Changing Your Mindset About Exercise

Negative Approach To Exercise

The more I try to help others incorporate some form of regular exercise into their lives, the more I discover how it is often approached with such a negative mindset. This is one of the reasons why people give up so easily once they start. Sure, some of us are more “internally driven” than others, but if you can start to change your thinking about WHY you exercise, it may become easier to stay consistent and persevere even when you are less motivated and feel like giving up.

How Exercise Is Often Perceived

Too often, regular exercise is perceived as an obligation. People will say “I have to go the gym“, or “I have to workout”. People will sometimes use exercise as a means of “punishing” themselves for what they ate or to “purge” calories. This self desructive behavior can be no different than Bulimia if it gets out of hand. The opposite is true as well. I have heard people say “I better do some extra time on the Elliptical because there will be a lot of food at the party tonight”. All of these represent a negative relationship with exercise and sometimes with food in general.

Change of Mindset

How about “I get to workout”, or “I can workout”? Gratitude, the words we use, and the way we speak to ourselves is so important. Both can change your entire outlook on anything. Being grateful for having the opportunity to exercise and appreciation for what your body CAN DO is huge! Planning 3-4 workouts a week (at home, outdoors, at gym), can also be viewed as appointments with yourself! And bosses rarely cancel…! Taking care of yourself by means of regular exercise is a form of self repect. You are respecting yourself by making sure to take care of this one important aspect of your overall health. Or…view it as a challenge! Instead of jumping on the scale every week to measure “progress” (often invalid measure of progress anyway), why not challenge yourself to see how consistent you can be?

Tips To Stay Motivated

Make sure not to do the same thing over and over. Mix it up! If you enjoy fitness classes, do 4 different ones every week. If you run, try new trails/routes and try to mix up your runs (do one longer run/week). Don’t forget to work on strength, flexibilty, and mobility. Exercise is not just about Cardiovascular fitness. Invest in yourself! Hiring a trainer even for a few sessions can make a world of difference! A trainer can properly assess you, help guide you on where/how to start, and give you proper instruction.

My Hope For You

There is a quote by Kevin Trudeau that I recently came across that resonated with me. “Most people have no idea how good their bodies are designed to feel”. I hope that this blog post resonated with some of you. I hope that it can change your mindset, motivate you to make some positive changes in the way you think about exercise and incorporate it into your life. Or at least to try…so you can really experience how your body was designed to feel!