How to enjoy working out
Do you view working out as an obligation or chore? Does this make you put off exercise? What if you started to associate exercise with pleasure and anticipation instead? If you’ve spent most of your life dreading working out or associating exercise with discomfort, it’s time to adjust how you think and learn how to enjoy working out.
Like mastering any new skill, learning how to enjoy exercise is part mindset and part practice. By adopting the attitude that exercise is enjoyable, you’re able to embrace fitness as part of a holistic wellness strategy. Learning how to love working out becomes a powerful tool for getting the body you want – and the extraordinary life you deserve.
How to enjoy working out: guiding principles
What are the underlying principles behind learning how to enjoy working out? The U.S. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion reports that there are five key factors in loving exercise and making it a habit: enjoyment, self-efficacy, social support, accountability and integration into your daily life. Since the most effective fitness routine is one you’ll stick to, the first factor – learning how to enjoy exercise – is key. Building self-confidence is also crucial since, if you’re intimidated or unsure, your fears will undercut your efforts to exercise. Social support plays a key role in how to love working out, since humans are social creatures influenced by their peer groups. Those peer groups provide accountability, another important factor in learning how to enjoy working out. And by integrating exercise into your daily routine, it becomes a habit. From here, you’re able to work out for your health and enjoyment.
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Tips for how to enjoy exercise
Aerobic exercise for weight loss is enjoyable, and there are several ways to find out how to enjoy working out.
1. Change your beliefs about working out
Want to learn how to enjoy exercise? It all starts with examining your beliefs and replacing negative beliefs with empowering ones. Many of your beliefs were set in childhood. If you participated in boring P.E. classes or were forced to be on the track team when you disliked running, you likely developed the belief that working out was something to be endured instead of enjoyed.
Take some time to examine your beliefs regarding exercise: Which are negative and which are positive? When did the negative beliefs form? Are they still true in your adult life or are you clinging to outdated beliefs that no longer serve you? Once you identify which beliefs are preventing you from learning how to enjoy exercise, you can work on changing them to positive beliefs that help you achieve your goals.
2. Adjust your focus
Many people have trouble learning how to love working out because they are focusing on only one outcome: weight loss. When you view exercise only as a way to manage weight, it becomes a “should” or an obligation. As Tony says, don’t “should” all over yourself! Instead of viewing working out as a way to lose weight, remind yourself that your body is yours to take care of and that every single decision you make – whether healthy or unhealthy – has the potential to help or hurt you.
When you start focusing on energizing your body and enhancing your life, you can view exercise as a healthy decision instead of an obligation. From here, learning how to enjoy working out becomes a natural extension of valuing your overall well-being.
3. Find the right type of workout
How to enjoy exercise is all about finding the right type of workout. Take some time and think back to a time when you enjoyed physical activity. Were you with friends, on a team or going solo? In a beautiful outdoor environment? Participating in a sport? Working out does not have to mean going to a gym and running on a treadmill for half an hour. You can learn how to love working out just by taking part in activities you like.
Taking a karate class or practicing your child’s cheerleading routine with them has the same health benefits as jogging or using the elliptical machine. Many people avoid exercise because they think it needs to look a certain way to qualify as “working out.” That said, any type of physical activity that elevates your heart rate is a form of exercise. When you find an activity that makes you happy, you’ll look forward to it instead of avoid it.
4. Make sure you have the energy to exercise
Learning how to enjoy exercise is a pretty daunting task when you barely have enough energy to get through your normal daily schedule or if you have pain in your joints. If lack of energy or inflammation are keeping you from working out, you need to look at your overall lifestyle. Are you eating foods that are high in fiber and fresh? Are you drinking plenty of water and taking the right supplements? Do you have effective ways to manage stress?
Poor diet, lack of self-care and a build-up of stress can zap your energy and leave you feeling exhausted and irritable. How to enjoy working out sinks pretty low on your list of priorities when it’s all you can do to just get through the day. Once you make healthy changes in other parts of your life, you can free up the energy needed to enjoy physical activity.
If your lifestyle is a barrier to mastering how to enjoy working out, consider trying Tony Robbins’ 10-Day Challenge. You’ll give yourself the gift of increased energy, a nourishing diet, optimal focus and physical fitness, all of which will prepare you to learn how to love working out for a lifetime.
5. Create time to work out
How to enjoy exercise is usually synonymous with having the time to exercise. If you feel rushed or that you’re sacrificing other parts of your life to get a workout in, you can’t have fun with your exercise routine. If you tell yourself you’re too busy to work out, you’re suffering from a limiting belief rather than an actual scheduling problem.
The reality is, you must create time to do the activities you love. Don’t make excuses – instead, find a solution. Set up your elliptical in front of your TV and work out when you watch your favorite sitcom. Take 15-minute breaks at work and walk around the block. While your kid is at football practice, power-walk around the field. When you realize you don’t need to cut out important parts of your life to work out, you can learn how to enjoy exercise without feeling guilty.
Exercise is a necessary part of a healthy, vibrant and energetic life. Once you change your negative beliefs about exercise, you can discover how to love working out and incorporate more of it into your daily schedule.
6. Incorporate music into your exercise routine
Research shows that listening to music is an invaluable component of learning how to enjoy exercise. Researchers compared three groups of participants: those who listened to music while exercising, those who listened to a podcast and those who listened to nothing. Music increased enjoyment by 28% compared to those with no auditory stimuli and by 13% compared to those who listened to a podcast. Researchers concluded that, by eliciting a more positive emotional state during exercise, music is a valuable tool for learning how to enjoy working out.
7. Exercise with other people
When it comes to learning how to enjoy exercise, the old adage is true: there really is strength in numbers. Research demonstrates that our social networks influence our exercise-related behaviors. Researchers studied how social interaction helped (or hurt) outcomes for participants wanting to lose weight. Participants who spent time with fit friends were more likely to successfully lose weight and enjoy exercise than participants whose peer group was not oriented toward healthful living. Researchers concluded that shaping your social ties around your exercise goals is key to getting the results you want. When you’re working on how to love working out, spend time with friends who embody the outcome you want.
Want to learn how to love working out?
If you’re serious about healthy living and about finding out how to enjoy working out, you can learn more about fat burning, maintaining a healthy body and more in Tony Robbins’ Ultimate Health Guide.