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Find (YOUR) Enjoyment in Fitness

31
May

Find (YOUR) Enjoyment in Fitness

“If running is difficult for you… Run more.”  This catchphrase was on a fellow health professional’s Instagram feed.  As a runner, I get it.  The more you run, the more your body becomes conditioned for running and the easier it gets.  As your body becomes conditioned to running through consistent effort, running will become more pleasurable and you will be able to run further and faster with less effort.  However….. as a fitness professional I could argue that any of the following would make a more appropriate substitute:

               “if running is difficult for you…. try biking.”

               “If running is difficult for you…. try swimming”

               “If running is difficult for you…. maybe long walks are better for you.”  Or, my favorite…

               “If running is difficult for you…try a class at Geneva Fit!”

While I am a running enthusiast and I recognize the cardiovascular, fitness and weight loss benefits of running, I can also think of many reasons why “running more” would not be in an individual’s best interest.  I would offer the following suggestions:

               “If running is difficult for you (because of previous injury), rehab your injury and address any lingering muscle imbalances before starting a running regime.”

               “If running is difficult for you (because of difficulty breathing or asthma), see a doctor and implement her/his recommendations and then gradually increase cardiovascular fitness before starting a running regime.”

               “If running is difficult for you (because it just doesn’t feel “right”), consult a running coach and a personal trainer that specializes in running mechanics and corrective exercise before starting a running regime.”  Or, perhaps…

               “If running is difficult for you (because of excess weight, lack of sleep, poor nutrition or extreme stress), address these underlying concerns before starting a running regime.  Finally,

               “If running is difficult for you (because you JUST DON’T LIKE IT or because you find it monotonous or boring), find something to do that you DO enjoy!”

Fitness activities need to be consistent to result in better health and wellness.  If you find a particular activity difficult and are not motivated to pursue that activity, find an activity that you want to do.  If you don’t know what that is, try different things until you find one that seems right for you.  No one exercise is right for everyone.  At the same time, no exercise will be easy the first time.  Whatever you try, give it a few consistent weeks of effort.  If, after that, you don’t find some aspect of the activity that you enjoy, try something different.  The key is to just keep trying.