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Fitness motivation is a struggle for almost everyone, even those who seem like they are already fit. Achieving great physical health involves so much more than attaining the perfect weight. If obstacles to fitness motivation are especially difficult, such as overcoming pain or worry over the body’s capacity to handle physical strain, one should seek the advice of a medical care professional or a physician.
There is no struggle so great that it cannot be overcome. For a piece of truly inspirational proof to this point, consider the life of Nick Vujicic who has no arms and no legs, but amazingly plays golf, swims and even skates on a board in his own fashion. While this short article should not be the only advice anyone seeks on this subject, here are a few tips about fitness and motivation that can help start us on our journey.
What Is Fitness Motivation?
Fitness motivation is the desire to exercise and eat well in order to improve physical health. Sometimes this motivation involves breaking a new record time for running a mile or training for a triathlon. Sometimes it’s as simple as going for a walk for the first time in a year.
No matter what the activity is, whether simple or grueling, it is a task that takes us one step further toward a better, healthier tomorrow. It’s a step toward looking better, feeling better and living longer with joy. But why do some of us seem to have more of this gift than others? Can there be such a thing as too much motivation?
Signs of Fitness Motivation Gone Wrong
Sometimes, we can get too much of a good thing. Fitness can become every bit as much of an addiction as food. Whether we have too much, or too little fitness motivation, the key in life is to find balance. There are a few tell tale signs of exercise addiction:
- Irritability or depression: Just like not getting enough exercise can lead to depression, getting too much can lead to addiction swings. Those who have become dependent on the “runner’s high,” get even grouchier than a coffee addict who is denied their daily espresso.
- Forgetting other pursuits: If one exercises to the exclusion of other important ventures in their life, such as relationships, friendships and even work, it might be time to admit that a problem exists.
- Refusing to accept realistic limitations: Some who are truly addicted to exercise will attempt to continue even when injured, causing even more damage. For instance, consider the runner who continues despite a twisted ankle. They may make this seem like a huge accomplishment in movies like “The Karate Kid,” but in real life, ventures like that can lead to lifetime physical disability.
We must all be realistic in our goals; otherwise, our fitness motivation becomes counter to our goals of improving physical health.
Tips to Find the Perfect Balance of Fitness Motivation
1. Be Realistic
Being realistic doesn’t mean settling for less. It means being patient. Improvements happen gradually, but if you work on fitness every day, the improvements do happen. It’s important to remember that if one “over does it” on the first day, it will be harder to get up and at it the next day.
Consider starting gently if it’s necessary. A gentle twenty-minute walk can be increased by five or ten minutes a week until one has graduated to a 40-minute brisk walk or even a jog.
2. Don’t Change for Others
The most inaccurate saying in human history is that “people never change.” Nothing could be further from the truth. People change every day. If they didn’t, none of us would get past the terrible twos. This misguided sentiment comes from the minds and hearts of people who have wanted someone else to make a change for them.
However, when we try to change to make someone else happy instead of ourselves, it never seems to last. A more accurate saying would be “people never change to please other people.” True fitness motivation comes within. Are we doing this to make everyone else happy, or are we doing this to make ourselves happy? If we are doing it to make ourselves happy, then we are off to the right start.
Each day is a journey. Why choose to live as others wish? They have their own lives to live. We have ours.
3. Remember to Have Fun
The most important rule to remember is that exercise should FEEL GOOD. If it feels good, then we are doing it right. That’s why we should pick the exercise that we enjoy doing the most. Fitness should not be a grueling act of torture.
Who would be crazy enough to show up for a good old-fashioned bamboo stick under the fingernail every day? To avoid that is a sign of sanity, not laziness! Biking and running are great fitness activities, but playing tennis, golfing or gardening are equally fantastic options.
Whatever activity we enjoy doing most, that is what we should do.
4. Don’t Try to Multitask
It’s tempting to take a laptop to the gym and try to study or work while we walk a treadmill or ride an exercise bike. If one can work while they work out, then they can work out longer right? Wrong. This goes back to tip number three.
IF working or studying is one’s favorite activity, then this might work. For most of us, exercise should be a way to escape our mundane, every day lives. That escape comes in the form of the healing, soothing Alpha brain waves that we achieve while “zoning out” to our movements during a great workout.
Alpha wave state is important to our mental health. It minimizes depression and stimulates a more creative state of mind.
5. Don’t Forget to Kiss: Keep It Simple, Superstar
The simpler a routine is, the easier it is to stick to it. There’s no need to develop an overly complex workout regimen. Just as long as we find a way to move every day we are making progress and making a positive difference in our lives.
There’s no time like the present. Why not go for a walk right now, or head to the beach? It’s always a great time to move. Do you have any tips to help encourage others on their fitness motivation journey? Please share your ideas below!
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