Monday, November 12, 2012

Why is Working Out So Hard?

Does anyone actually enjoy working out? Those people, who claim they're addicted to working out, are they just big, non fat liars?

I've never been someone who loves to work out. I get all excited for a minute and then I think, wait that means I have to stop watching 30 Rock and get off the couch? That's a deal breaker ladies. I'll do it tomorrow.

I'm a big fan of accidentally working out. In Peace Corps I had to ride my bike or walk everywhere. We were too poor to pay for that transportation stuff all the time. I rode my bike pretty much every day. My legs were starting to look awesome thanks to that uphill ride to school. In my job before Peace Corps I had a lot of accidental exercise. I ran errands and carried heavy things and did a ton of walking.

Well now that I have a desk job I'm not getting much accidental exercise. And food here is fattening and delicious, unlike food in Cambodia. Since I've been back I've noticed a bit more junk in the trunk. But seriously, my butt has soaked up everything I've been eating. I looked up exercises for my derriere, but (pun not intended) I still butt(...ok, pun intended) up against my lack of motivation.

So my question...

How in the world do you get yourself motivated enough to work out, by yourself?

I'm too poor for a gym membership and I hate running (side does one start to like running instead of finding it excruciatingly boring?)

I've always loved yoga and used it to it all the time, but then we went to a hot sweaty place where it would have been like doing bikram yoga all the time, so that just didn't happen.

How do you get back into the swing of things?

I need some advice. I need some motivation. I need my pants to fit normal again.


Torrie said...

It took me awhile to really like exercise, but I would say that I'm now one of "those people." Of course, the irony now is that I basically have absolutely no time to work out.

Isn't that just the way of things?

As far as motivation goes, you will never be motivated if your workout doesn't include something you love. The best way for me to get out of a workout rut is to try something new: swimming, tennis, hiking, road biking, Pilates, etc. etc. And I also find that once I'm in the habit of doing it, it seems much easier as well. It's when you're trying to establish the habit for the first time that it's the most difficult.

As for liking running, you could train for a marathon. That's how I forced myself to like it, lol.

Scott & Traci said...

Oh my goodness, love how you defined "accidental exercise" That is my favorite too! Where you are just having fun doing something active, and you're not even realizing it is "exercise!"

So.. I'm not the best for advice but... this is something I think about a lot. Is there anything you and Hal could do together? Scott & I have been on softball , soccer and tennis teams together, and LOVE that, getting out to play a sport is so much fun! Even if I stunk at it, it was a lot of fun :)

Also- I had to teach myself to like running, I listen to my favorite songs, pick my own pace, and get outside to enjoy scenery.

I also have realized that if you aren't in the running mood, just do the same distance walking. It takes longer, but does the same thing. My sister in law HATES Running, but stays in amazing shape just going on long walks. I am not able to go running as much I should, but Scott & I walk with our kids lots, and they LOVE being outside, it is really relaxing just to walk :)

Anyway, you are just gorgeous, don't stress too much, you always look so lovely :) And I think you have the key to exercise, do things that get you out and about, but that you aren't really thinking about! :)


Ashley said...

non fat liars...hahaha!

I found it harder to work out in America. Here in London, I'm walking a ton!!! Accidental exercise FTW!

When I was in the US, I would forgo my car for anything I could walk. No exceptions. But I'm not great at exercising. The couch is more fun.

Natalie said...

I have to admit that I'm one of those people who likes exercise. I think I like how I feel when I'm exercising regularly more than I like exercising itself, but once you get hooked on feeling healthy it's all one in the same.

I've found that more than anything else, being organized when it comes to exercise can be an enormous motivator. I realized that I was much more likely to go to the gym, go on a run, go to yoga, etc., if I had made a schedule for the upcoming week. So, I sit down every Sunday night and choose which four days I'm going to go exercise and which additional day I'm going to go to yoga. You obviously don't have to do the same number and/or types of workouts, but you get the idea. When I don't have a schedule I start feeling overwhelmed and guilty ALL THE TIME for not working out, which is craziness. When you've scheduled out your workouts, you can focus on employing your self-control when you need to follow the schedule, but also enjoy your time off on those days that you've decided you aren't going to work out.

As far as exercising without a gym membership goes, I think there are a few small things you can buy/use that will make a gym membership completely irrelevant. First off, use YouTube and/or iPhone apps to find workouts. There are tons of budding trainers posting all kinds of workout videos online, whether they be dance, weight lifting, cardio step, or yoga. Then all you need to do is clear a space in front of your computer where you can jump around for a bit. On the app front, there are tons of options out there but I particularly like Nike Women's Training Club. They have videos that tell you how to do all the exercises, as well as various levels for various experience levels and goals. I would also consider investing in a pair of 10 lb. dumbbells (you can buy them on Amazon for something like $30). They will literally last you forever and if you have two dumbbells you have the necessary equipment to do 90% of the workouts out there (and don't forget that weight training is essential to maintaining a healthy skeleton!).

When it comes to running outside, I think they key is to find something to listen to that you enjoy. I get incredibly bored running and listening to music, but I LOVE This American Life, an hour-long radio show on NPR. I ended up running a half marathon earlier this year, and I got through the training by listening to a different episode of This American Life every single time I went running (I was able to stream the episodes through my smart phone). With the large array of all kinds of podcasts out there, you will probably be able to find something that you can listen to that will make the time go by much faster than it would if you spent your entire run thinking about how much you hate running!

Sorry this is probably WAY more advice than you were looking to get! I find exercise and the things that motivate us to do it to be incredibly interesting. You seem like such an interesting and genuine person - I just found your blog but I love it already!

Ashley said...

I agree...I'm one of those people who likes "accidental" working out as well.

I enjoy the classes at the gym. Because they start at a specific time, that's what gets me there...and then when I'm there I can't slack off, because I'm in a class!

Kell said...

Girl, if you find the answer to this let me know. Because I am THE worst at motivating myself to work out. There is a treadmill sitting in the other room collecting dust. I just can't bring myself to spend any time on it when I'm surrounded by so much food and good TV.

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

I use to actually like working out but I think I had diluted myself into thinking it was fine. I now don't find anything fun about going to a gym and working out. I have to do things like riding outside, swimming etc.

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