For many of us the thought of planned exercise usually elicits a groan of displeasure as the thought of mindlessly jogging around the neighbourhood yet again or banging more weights around in the gym does little to fill us with any great enthusiasm. However, it doesn’t have to be that way and here are a few tips to help you turn an unenviable chore into something you can look forward to doing.
Find A Friend
If you can con a friend into exercising with you, that’s one way to make exercise more enjoyable. For both of you. You can make up challenges to keep you motivated, motivate each other, turn your exercise into a game, make it more of a social outing than an exercise routine and generally keep each other entertained. It will also give you someone to talk to whilst you’re jogging or at the gym.
Variety Is The Spice Of Life
Keep it interesting by spicing up your routine a bit. If you go jogging in the same place every day you’ll soon get bored with it so vary it up. Choose a different route then do it in reverse, rinse and repeat. You could even hop in your car and drive somewhere different to run.
If you’re using a gym, try using different equipment. Vary your exercises and your routine. Use the equipment in reverse order to the way you used it yesterday.
Find Your Inner Child
Be on the lookout for parks with playground equipment and let your inner child surface. Climb up the ladder and slide down the slide. Use the monkey bars to do some simple exercises like chin ups or swing from them like Tarzan. Just think about all the ways you’d use them if you were a child again and let your imagination run wild.
Some parks offer outdoor circuit courses that have been set up with people just like you in mind. People who want some fun whilst they’re exercising. These circuits usually consist of a planned course with stations that contain instructions for the next section located at intervals around it. You simply jog, or walk depending on your level of fitness, from station to station, get your instructions for the next leg and carry on. This is a great one to do with a friend.
Plan Your Own
No outdoor circuits to be found in your vicinity? Make up your own. Plan to jog to the big tree over there, or 100 metres or so, whichever looks more fun. When you get there, you can do some push-ups before walking to the next marker in your course. At that marker you may pull out a skipping rope and do 10 basic one hops or alternating jumps, side straddles, front straddles, double unders or whatever your level of jump rope ability is. Again, a great one to do with a friend. You can laugh at each other’s ineptitude with the jump rope. Another 100 metres of jogging then some sit ups. You’ll only be limited by your imagination.
Cycling is one of the greatest ways to exercise, and get around. Need to pop down to the local store? Leave the car keys where they are and bike it, or walk it instead.
Head out to your nearest hiking trail and go for a hike. There is always plenty to see and do on these trails, especially if they meander through natural bushland. Or just take the dog for a walk every day; your canine companion will enjoy it just as much as you. If you have a dog park handy, go have an energetic play with your hound. You’d be surprised by how much exercise you’ll both get.
Anyone For Yoga
Then there’s the nice, relaxing way to exercise body and mind at the same time with some yoga in the park. Or at the beach.
Join A Team
If you’re a competitive soul you may want to look into joining a local sporting team – softball, tennis, soccer, basketball, volleyball. You’ll meet new people, make new friends and at the same time you’ll be exercising your body.
There are also a few tricks that you can try to make your exercise routines more beneficial. Research tells us that when you think about the muscles you’re exercising whilst you’re exercising, they respond more effectively.
So as you can see, there are many ways to get more enjoyment out of exercising. Mix it up, find a friend, do different things on different days – you don’t always have to go to the gym to get in a decent workout. The point is to try and make some type of exercise a normal part of your daily routine and if you can make sure you have fun doing it, you’ll be much keener to keep at it. The article Exercise – Can It Be Turned Into Fun was written by David Cross.