The idea of an exercise program seems so intimidating.
I drag myself to the gym a few times every year, and then inevitably quit.
Even though I always feel better once I get into a routine of working out, I just hate the pounding noise, bright lights, rows of machines and factory-like atmosphere. I can’t keep up with the fast-paced classes, and usually end up in the back somewhat embarrassed by my lack of coordination.
However, nobody has to ask me to dig out new garden beds, move heavy rocks, shovel compost, rake leaves and generally work in the garden until I am sweaty, tired, sore and happy! I get an odd sense of satisfaction moving furniture and mopping the floor (OK, this doesn’t happen very often!)
I love fast-paced walking outdoors, preferably with a friend who likes to chat (and complain) as much as I do. I like the quiet stretching of yoga, even though my techniques are not very impressive. And I think that carrying loads of laundry up from the basement to the second floor bedrooms must count as some sort of sport!
In other words, as long as I don’t think of all this physical activity as exercise, and as long as there is no competition and nothing to prove, I enjoy it!
Here’s a thought:
Moving your body in any way is … exercise.
Moving your body in any way that you enjoy is …
yes, also exercise!
If you hated gym class as much as I did,
replacing the word “exercise” with activity (or movement) opens up a whole world of enjoyable possibilities to “get up and get moving”.
Think of all the things we stop ourselves from doing because we are not perfect:
Not having a dinner party because our cooking is not fancy enough.
Not singing in church because we can’t carry a tune.
Not wearing something we love because we aren’t skinny enough.
And yes, not getting any exercise because we are “out of shape”.
You don’t have to be on “Dancing with the Stars”, to have fun dancing around the kitchen to your favorite song. You can enjoy throwing a few balls at the hoop in the driveway without making a basket. You can have a great time skiing on the beginner’s slope, or swimming in the slow lane, or even just bobbing around in the water.
You don’t need to be training for the Tour de France to hop on your bike and spin around the neighborhood, and guess what? You can even walk a marathon if you feel like it.
You don’t need to be an athlete to be athletic!
So let’s make 2010 the year to get up & get moving, even if we hate to “exercise”.
(and of course, you don’t need an adorable outfit to go ice skating, although it helps!)