Tips from a Reformed Exercise Hater
I never thought this would be me. I never thought I would like to exercise but here I am, surprised AF but also liking exercise. I wanted to write this article because so many of us have the wrong mentality about exercise and I’m hoping this will help someone else switch sides and find joy in working out. Don’t get me wrong this joy isn’t constant but I like it more than I don’t. For me, that’s a win. So here are some tips that helped me during my process.
Tip #1: It takes WAY more than 21 days to make a habit.
- Maybe for more dedicated individuals, 21 days is enough to make a habit but that damn sure wasn’t the case for me. This has been an 8-12+ month street fight. Mentally prepare yourself for the long haul. There will be consistent months and there may be a few weeks of nothing, just remember to start again. You have the rest of your life to get it right.
Tip #2: Find the time that works best for you and stick with it.
- I’ve always been a morning person. After work, the only thing you can only convince me to do is party, eat, or sleep. Analyze your body’s natural rhythm against your weekly schedule to find your sweet spot.
Tip #3: Schedule your rest days and don’t let people guilt you into breaking them.
- Rest days are as important as exercising. That also gives you something to look forward to during the week. My workout routine is weekdays on, weekends off. My fiance tries to convince me to workout on a Saturday and it feels great to laugh in his face when I say no.
Tip #4: Decide what type of workouts you enjoy the most or hate the least.
- I love to dance and I love Beyonce. When I really started liking exercise was when I started learning Beyonce choreography. I was able to dance along to songs I knew and loved (More importantly I was able to prepare for the next Bey concert!). I love using the rowing machine, during the summer I even like trying couch to 5k, one of these years I’ll actually finish it. I hate burpees. I hate burpees like I hate Andrew Jackson, too small thongs, and white privilege. The point is to try different things. There is no one way to exercise.
Tip #5: Know your ideal workout setting.
- I HATE going to the gym! I fucking hate it. I don’t want to have to match my clothes, I don’t want to wear shoes while I exercise, half the time I don’t even want to wear a bra, and I definitely don’t feel like driving there. So I learned that home workouts are my happy medium. All I have to manage is rolling out of bed and walking down the hall.
Tip #6: Watch your words and attitude.
- Honestly, this might be the most crucial tip. You cannot continue to talk about exercise as if you don’t like it, don’t want to do it, or want to avoid it. You have to speak positively about the experience. No, that doesn’t mean lie, but it does mean start adjusting your language. I started by cutting out negative talk about exercise. Then I moved on to say, I like the results that exercise is bringing to me. Then I really moved up by saying, I can see myself doing this consistently. To finally admitting (begrudgingly) I like my workouts. It’s a process, let your language reflect it. I was so used to saying I hated exercise that by the time I actually started to like it I would never say it. I was stuck in my old way of thinking and it wasn’t helpful.
Tip #7: Latch on to someone who already likes exercise when you are starting.
- My cousin is no-nonsense about her workouts and is not here for my complaining so when she flipped my light on at 5:30 in the morning to go workout, I huffed and grumbled to myself but I started getting dressed. Thankfully, I started working out with my fiance and he lets me complain a lot more. Both of them are religious about working out and it became our routine together. Working out with someone else is always more fun than doing it alone.
Youtube Channels I recommend
- 10 Rounds
- This is my least favorite and “coincidentally” it also has the most burpees
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