On the back of the old Subaru I drove in high school was a bumper sticker that read, “If it’s not fun, why do it?” Out of the dozens of bumper stickers that held that old clunker-of-love together, this one stood out the most to me and is one of the mottos I’ve used to live my life, especially when it comes to how I choose to stay fit and active.
As kids, we would countdown the minutes until we could race outside, chasing our friends around the playground and passing a ball back and forth with the kid next door. But as adults, even lacing up tennis shoes to meet our recommended 2 hours and 30 minutes of aerobic activity a week can be a hassle. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, less than half of American adults reach this and even less meet the recommended muscle-strength training activity with under 25 percent strength training at least 2 – 3 times a week.
Whether it’s from boredom, a lack of interest, or simply despising exercising, there are solutions to putting the fun back into fitness. These ideas will help make reaching your fitness goals a piece of cake, so you can enjoy a piece of cake and even enjoy working the extra calories off later.
Make it a date! – You’ve been trying to schedule that dinner with your friend for how long? Why not make a fitness date? A workout date holds you accountable, gives you an excuse to actually find time to get together with a friend, allows you to try something new, and you’re more likely to work out longer and harder than if you were by yourself. Some trainers even offer discounts to duos, another perk to having a workout bud!
Don’t let boredom defeat you – Avoid the rut by changing things up and setting up a schedule with different classes and workouts. There are also apps out there such that allow you to partake in fitness challenges with friends and even put a little moolah on the line for extra incentive
Work towards a goal – Maybe running daily isn’t your thing, but you’d love to do that mud run everyone talks about. Or if you’re someone who enjoys traveling, see what fun runs take place when you’ll be there. These give you something to train for and a way to explore a new place!
Not fun? Don’t do it! – Okay, so it’s not going to be kicks and giggles the whole time. But if it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you, right? The key is to find something that pushes and invigorates you. Don’t like the treadmill? Find another activity you enjoy that will increase your heart rate. Sign up for a dance class, run with your dog, take your workout outside, or turn it into a competition. Because at the end of the day, if it’s not fun, why do it!
by Genevieve Nutting