Exercise Should be Enjoyable
Hi guys! I don’t know about you, but from time to time I get stuck in a workout rut. I can’t seem to find the motivation to exercise, and very few types of workouts sound appealing to me. I am very picky when it comes to my workout style! What I’ve discovered is how important it is to feel good exercising and enjoy the workout in the moment. If I don’t enjoy it and try to push through, I am unable to achieve results, and have a hard time motivating myself to exercise in the future.
During my first two years of college, I was going to the school gym at least 5 times a week. It felt like every other day I was dragging myself there, fighting to stay longer than 30 minutes. I would run on the treadmill, do some ab workouts, and call it a day. I hardly reflected on the fact that I never enjoyed any of my workouts. I really only went to burn off calories, and on the days I didn’t make it to the gym, I would eat less to compensate for the calories I didn’t burn off. Over the past couple years I’ve come to realize how utterly unhealthy that mentality was. Why should I have to suffer through my workouts instead of actually enjoying the benefits of physical exercise?
The answer is, I shouldn’t! After realizing how unhealthy the gym is for my mentality, I started to seek out workouts that best suit my body. I’ve tried many types of working out, and after trial and error, have come to find that hot yoga is the best for my mind and my body. However, I’m even picky with that! I love hot yoga with weights, cardio, and awesome music. I enjoy my workout and no longer have to drag myself out the door. I don’t focus on the amount of calories I burn off, but instead, I focus on the mental benefits and being strong and healthy.
Finding the right workout for your body is completely different for everyone! Some people may love going to the gym, and others may not. I am not one of those people, and I’ve searched for alternatives that make working out enjoyable for me. Here are my takeaways from various workouts I've tried! They differ for everybody, but hopefully you can gain some insight on which kind of workout best suits you!
Barre is low impact, but targets muscle groups that I didn’t even know I had. After a barre class, I feel toned, but not overly exhausted. With fun music and an upbeat instructor, barre classes are all in all a feel great workout!
Yoga comes in all forms. If you are very patient and love a slower paced class, than a vinyasa flow is great. I love taking these types of classes on days I don’t feel like being pushed too hard- even though they can still be very challenging! My favorite type of yoga is “sculpt” with weights, upbeat music, and a heated room. I feel challenged in these classes and leave with a clear mind!
Ok, I am not a spinner. I’ve tried to be, and the classes I’ve gone to are awesome, but for whatever reason, spinning doesn’t do it for me. However, spinning is great for letting off steam and I usually leave a class barely being able to walk the next day! A great workout for many, just not for me!
HIIT workouts are fast paced and fun! They are perfect for the “less patient” who like to move on to the next workout quickly before getting too bored. You will definitely feel your heart rate rise! They can be challenging, but are perfect for a quick burn.
Although I don’t do zumba regularly, it is probably the most fun/funny form of workout I have ever experienced. If you’ve ever been to a zumba class before, you’ll know what I’m talking about. People of all ages, and all walks of life gather and dance their hearts out. It doesn’t feel like a workout because it’s so fun, but you will end up sore the next day without even realizing how hard you worked!
Note: If you are a college student, many schools offer classes in their rec center for free! If you don' t have access to these classes, a great way to try different workouts is through programs like Class Pass They offer a variety of classes you can try for great deals. Also, many exercise studios offer discounted classes for students or first time triers. It's a great way to get a feel for the kind of workout you will enjoy!
Another Note: Remember to fuel your workouts by keeping your body nourished! A light snack before such as a Zucchini and Cinnamon Crunch Breakfast Cookie with almond butter and a protein filled meal after such as this Dark Chocolate Cherry Smoothie are perfect for ensuring the body receives the nutrients it needs to achieve the best results from a workout! Enjoy friends!