How To Exercise - When You Don't Like To Exercise (Part 5)

How To Exercise - When You Don't Like To Exercise (Part 5)
March 22, 2023
How To Exercise - When You Don't Like To Exercise (Part 5)

Strategy #5: Adjust your expectations.

The fitness culture has exploded. This can be a good thing when it encourages people to get active and try new things, but it can also be, well, intense. These days, it seems you can’t just throw on some sweats and move your body; you have to go full BEAST MODE. And it’s not enough to just get it done, you have to do something you LOVE. Plus, your efforts should somehow result in six-pack abs no matter your age, gender, and lifestyle. #noexcuses.

Let’s take the expectations down a notch, shall we?

Truth is, movement doesn’t require anything fancy, or have to yield some magical transformation overnight.

By adjusting your expectations around exercise, you can make the whole thing less of an ordeal… maybe even more fun.

Don’t worry about “loving it”—aim for “meh” instead.

Exercise advocates will tell you to “find something you love.” But for some of us, “love” is too strong of a word. Case in point: We asked a previously inactive client what she loved about her new workout routine.

Her answer surprised us.

“I don’t love any of this,” she said. “I don’t love walking. I don’t love going to the gym. What I do feel is a sense of contentment after I’ve done it.”

But you know what? That’s okay. The good new is that you don’t have to love it. The goal is to find something tolerable that adds some value to your life. Think of it like brushing your teeth: No one gets really excited about doing it, but you know it’s important for your health, and it feels good after you do it.

Be nicer to yourself.

Years ago, a friend and I agreed we’d start working out. Without intending to do so, we both took different approaches:

The night before, I’d write little notes of encouragement for myself to see first thing in the morning. Stuff like, “You are a badass.”

My friend, however, would wake up and say to himself: “Get up you lazy bum. That weight isn’t going to lose itself.”

Guess which one of us made it to our workout? (It was me.)

These results aren’t just anecdotal:

Research has shown that “beating themselves up” was the #1 factor that causes people to quit. Research also shows that self-compassion—being kind and supportive to yourself—is positively associated with health-promoting behaviors like eating healthy, exercising, prioritizing sleep, and managing stress. It makes sense: Being a jerk to yourself pretty much guarantees you’re not going to have a good time, no matter what you’re doing. So, watch your self-talk. Try to be kind and encouraging, and give yourself a gold star for your efforts, no matter how small. Maybe even write a friendly note for yourself. Sounds cheesy, but it works.

We hope that these five strategies will help you build lifestyle habits that will improve your physical and mental health!

- Team Maneki Fit

Continue Reading

pushpress gym management software for boutique gyms and fitness studios