Listen, the plight of the millennial generation is that social media has created this perfect storm of events which has caused us to be bombarded with image after image of people with perfect bodies. The thing is, there is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to look like an action star. The real problem is that those wishes can become expectations foisted upon us, and we don’t have teams of nutritionists and personal trainers to help us get there!
We are, in the majority, a bunch of normal everyday people with priorities outside of looking like we just stepped off a magazine cover, but that doesn’t mean exercise isn’t important. It just means that we’re mainly doing it for our health (which isn’t a terrible reason for doing it, honestly). Here’s my philosophy on that: If I’m going to spend hours of my life grinding it out in a gym for the sake of my dang arteries, then I’m going to bloody well enjoy it!
It’s certainly going to help you keep up with it longer if you’re actually having a good time. So, from your resident crazy weight-lifter, here are a few tips for finding out how you enjoy exercising.
Reflect on your past active experiences
You’ve most likely had previous experience with exercising or being active, and the best place to start with figuring out how you prefer to sweat it out is by process of elimination. Basically, figure out what you hate.
Here’s an example!
I used to do Pilates as my primary method of exercise, and it’s a fantastic one at that. You don’t need a lot of equipment, you can do Pilates pretty much anywhere, and it hits both your cardio and your resistance requirements in one fell swoop. Despite all of these benefits, I found that Pilates didn’t give me the kind of strength I was looking for, and some of the movements would trigger my weird hip and knee, so I stopped exercising altogether for ages.
Until I found weights. And now, I’m at the gym every week, because I found out that I love lifting stuff!
So, think about your journey towards an exercise routine as an evolution of your past experience. Do you like doing things with other people and having fun during exercise? If so, then engaging in some sort of team sport may be for you! Do you want to look like a majestic angel spinning around on a pole? Well, pole dancing is a great way to build core, arm and leg strength!
Trust me, if you don’t enjoy something, it’s okay not to force it! There are hundreds of kinds of exercise out there for you.
Build a habit and science this b!%&#
Once you’ve found a kind of exercise you think you might enjoy, it’s time to test it out as a habit in your life. Maybe you’ve decided that you like CardioBarre or cycling or stripping naked and running full pelt under the light of the moon while howling – I don’t know your life.
Whatever it is, stick with it for three weeks. You heard me – three weeks! This what I like to call the “habit window” because that is how long it takes for a reliable habit to form. During this period, you can decide whether your chosen method fits into your lifestyle, whether you have enough time for it, and most importantly – whether you’re actually enjoying yourself!
If your Canadian mate tries to get you into rock climbing, and you stick with it even though you don’t really want to and end up with bruised ribs and an overly apologetic Canadian who won’t leave you alone, that’s on you. (That’s not from personal experience, I don’t know what you’re talking about.)
It’s all trial and error, baby
Regardless of what your choice is, it’s on you to take charge of your own life experience! Block out time – which is so much easier when you actually enjoy doing it – and get your ass out there. If you find that you don’t like what you’ve tried, that’s completely fine, try something else until you discover the one that makes you grin through the sweat.
Get more tips like this delivered right to your doorstep… or your inbox, I guess.
We won’t come to your house, we promise, but we will keep posting helpful tips and tricks on all kinds of lifestyle topics every week! Subscribe to the Zizacious newsletter so you don’t miss out.