I spend a lot of time each week thinking about what topics I want to use for my blog posts. I want them to represent not only who I am as a person but I also what to practice what I preach to my clients as a personal trainer. The topic this week is no different.
I have to be honest with you, there is no one workout that will change your life.
I get a good laugh whenever I see headlines like ‘These 5 Exercises Will Help You Lose Weight Faster’ or ‘This is the Most Effective Exercise to Boost Your Metabolism’ or one of my favorites ‘This Exercise Will Change Your Life.’ I’m not mocking the headlines but rather what they represent. Working out is one of the best things you can do for your physical and emotional health. I see exercise completely different from 25 years ago when I started personal training. Back then it was still about getting people healthy and losing weight, but now I shift the focus to getting people to a stage where they feel good about their bodies. They workout because they love their body, not because they hate it.
Exercise is a very personal tool. I never treat two people the same when it comes to exercise design. We all have different needs and with exercise, there are no limitations. It goes without saying that if you are training for a particular event, you are subjected to an exercise program with limitations in order to achieve your goals. However, if your goal is one of to get fit and seek out general health, the world is your oyster when it comes to creating a personal exercise program.
There are many ways to get your heart rate up whether you are taking a group exercise class, running, cycling, swimming, or doing your own circuit. There are also many ways to increase and tone muscle. The key to success when aiming to reach a fitness goal, is not the type of workout, but rather what inspires you and makes you happy. Too often I see people take a class thinking that they can emulate the body of the instructor who is teaching the class. Many times, the mentality is ‘if I do this class enough times, I will look like the instructor.’ Wrong! First of all, our body types and metabolism are different from one another. Secondly, food plays more of role in losing weight than what exercise ever will. Thirdly, some people spend a lot of time working out where others just don’t have the time to put into it. And, if I had to add another reason, most group instructors or personal trainers LOVE WHAT THEY DO! I’ve taught spin classes for over 20 years. Trust me, there are only so many things you can do on a bike but I love this type of workout. It motivates and inspires me. You should feel this way when you are exercising too.
If you like what you do regardless of the activity, you will continue with it. If you dread going to a group class or participate in a physical activity that you don’t enjoy, you won’t stick with it. Many times, people just give up and stop working out altogether as they are not enjoying the workout. If you don’t like to spin, don’t do it. If you don’t like to run, don’t do it. If you enjoy walking, then do it. They are many ways to increase the intensity of your walks to burn more calories. It’s called getting creative with your workouts. If you don’t enjoy going to the gym, don’t go. Find a professional that can create your ‘dream workout’ so you get inspired to get physical and reap the rewards of feeling great.
Another red flag, is that often people don’t change up their workouts enough. The monotony gets to them, they don’t see results, they don’t feel challenged, and eventually they give up. If you need to see the signs of when to change your workout, read one of my latest blog posts on ‘4 Signs It’s Time to Change Your Workout.’
At the end of the day, there is no magical workout to help you reach your general fitness goals. It’s up to you to find out what inspires you and makes you want to jump out of bed every morning to start moving.
Eat Well – Move Well – Live Well
Your Compassionate Coach,