Sunday, May 20, 2012

This I Believe: In Doing Exercise You Enjoy

This I Believe is a great series on NPR. It's based on a 1950s radio program (with the same name) and features people from various backgrounds and experiences sharing personal philosophies and core values that guide their daily lives. This week...I'm gonna my own health focused version of "This I Believe"....

I believe in doing exercise you enjoy. I love Zumba, Running, Walking in the Park, and HIIT workouts at UHF. I also love 24 Lift, Pole Fitness, Chair Dance, and World Beat Dance. I don't care for body bump, yoga, kickboxing, or softball. So, I don't do matter how great of a work out it maybe.

I don't think that being active should be a chore or a punishment. I don't think exercise should be something you have to force yourself to participate in. I think exercise should be something you look forward too and have fun at times during (notice I didn't say throughout the whole time...I think no matter what there will be parts of an activity that may not be "enjoyable" or as "enjoyable").

I seem to read stories or read blog/facebook posts every week about someone who is forcing themselves to become a runner or do insanity or some other workout that they don't care for because they've heard that its a 'good' workout or because xxxx is doing it and looks great or because xxxx is recommended it. Often, I find that they don't stick with it or don't give it their best effort because they don't.

There are so many things one can do to stay active and enjoy themselves...hiking, biking, swimming, kickball, volleyball, dancing. It doesn't have to be a group x class or a machine. In college, I did intramural basketball, soccer, and flag football. I wouldn't mind finding a flag football team here to play around.

I've been running since I was very small...I've never stopped (with the exception of the time off due to the knee rehab). I love that natural high that you can achieve by pushing yourself to another level. I enjoy walking - usually at the park. I love getting some sunshine and fresh air and being able to clear my head.

It's clear that I have a blast with Zumba. I've been taking it on and off for nearly 5 years and started teaching it about a 1 year and 1/2 ago. Participating in Zumba may have caused me to realize that exercise should be fun and to do the activities that I found enjoyable or make activity enjoyable (like walking with friends or running in 5ks). I don't I fully realized that before - I just think I gravitated to those things naturally. But, certainly, after that realization I only participated in activities I liked - No attending a class or doing a routine just because I couldn't find an alternative.

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