New Routines That Resonate

Today we’re exploring newness in fitness. The idea of introducing something new can make us uncomfortable and cause resistance (on the other hand, it could be exciting). When I was a non-exercising slug, I was always trying to think of new things to ‘add’ to my non-existent fitness routine, especially around age 30 when I started gaining weight and was desperate to figure out how to stop that trend. At that time, I’d been transferred from California to the Mid-West area, and I bought a beautiful purple peugeot bike to entice myself to start taking bike rides into nearby towns. But I was a pretty terrible biker and it wasn’t that much fun so that didn’t last long. Then I thought I should make myself go down to the community pool and do laps, but it was a chore and boring so I only did that a handful of times. Result: Most of my 3-year assignment in dreary Cleveland was spent in unhappy inactivity. Life Lesson Learned: If it isn’t ‘fun’ it’s very unlikely to become a habit.


Since then, thank goodness, I found that aerobics classes and group exercise were ‘fun’ (to me) — and ever since, for way more years than I care to say, working out has been at the top of my priority list and basically I’m obsessed with everything ‘fitness’. Fitness classes, fitness clothes, staying fit — all these things meet my definition of ‘fun.’

However, I’ve been a little baffled as to how to get excited with an addition to my fitness regimen that I mentioned a few weeks back — I said I wanted to increase my hiking. I’ve told myself that I should go hiking in a nearby urban park– this wouldn’t even require preparation or getting in my car, and I tried to envision that it would be ‘fun’. But, instead, many excuses materialized, with me convincing myself that the trail might be dreary and I might encounter menacing people. Thus, I stayed inside. Shades of Cleveland.

But let’s really examine what’s going on here, instead of beating myself up for not being able to add something new to my workouts. When I think about it, I prefer working out around other people, indoors. The only hiking I like is with someone else or a small group. No surprise that I couldn’t motivate myself to go hiking solo.

Getting motivated to add something new to your workout routine seems to be a matter of finding activities that really resonate, and definitely takes some introspection and self-exploration. Of course, when you find something ‘fun’ — don’t hold back . . . just go for it . . . make it an instant habit!

For now, I’ll stick to my routine of going to the gym almost daily, and feel good about it — that’s about the best I can do, with each and every workout being fairly unique and thus ‘new’.

[Img.Src: Bicyclist, Swimmer, Group Exercise]

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