I love to work out. Exercise is my therapy, the best part of my day. But lately I’ve been in a bit of a lifestyle slump (could it be that I’m turning thirty next week!?!) and haven’t been super pumped to hit the gym (ok, just my basement). I’ve been wandering around, playing with my dog, DOING THE DISHES, watching Anthony Bourdain reruns, all in an subconscious effort to avoid my workout. Don’t get me wrong, I got my butt down there and worked out every day still, but I wasn’t excited to do it. Very confusing to me.
Lately, I have been doing intense cardio intervals paired with weight lifting. I feel great when the workouts are over, but I was kind of bored while doing them. The difference between looking forward to an hour long workout and thinking “I do not want to spend 60 minutes doing this” directly impacts your results. So, I switched things up.
When I found myself wandering around, picking up odd tasks instead of tying on my sneakers and getting to work, I changed my workout. I pushed play on Sh’Bam, a silly and fun dance workout. I spent half an hour doing something that was just FUN. It made me smile. It made me laugh. It made me realize that while I can do a flying jump kick, I can’t dance hip hop to save my life. It made me sweat. It made me feel light. It made me clear my mind. And that’s what exercise should do.
I have an issue with focusing on how to get the most intense, most extreme, maximum calorie burn and muscle gain from my workouts. But I’ve come to find that sometimes NONE of those are the reasons I workout. Sometimes, we workout just to SMILE. To feel more alive, to feel more strong, to feel better. It’s OK to burn a few less calories than a different workout would have done, if you come out feeling like a better human.
If someone tries to sell you on THE workout that will change your life, tell them to get lost. There is no one size fits all workout that will give you the celebrity results you dream of. We are all different and different movement makes us feel strong, happy, healthy, the BEST. What I am also learning is that movement, the workout, the program…can change even for us as individuals. There are days when all I want to do is lift heavy, other days where I want to crush some breathless cardio, and lately? There are days when I just want to dance, and (as Rachel says in Sh’bam) touch EVERYTHING. It’s put me in touch with my body and allowed me to see that fitness isn’t always about personal records, or being 100% on point with nutrition, or constantly pushing yourself. Sometimes fitness is just about that…being fit. Mentally. Physically. Emotionally.
It’s no wonder people make excuses to skip the gym when you feel like this inside. Don’t force yourself into anything, but try EVERYTHING. You might just be surprised at what you find to be your soul mate workout….today. Grab a friend or go at it alone, but be up for anything.