Has exercise and fitness become a bit of a chore to you? Or do you love it but simply go to the same class, same time, same place, day-in-day-out? Exercise on auto-pilot is a shortcut to a plateau in results. So how do we fall back in love with exercise? PLAY. Yes, I mean good old-fashioned rolling down hills, hula-hooping, slam-dunking, water-gun fighting play. Rather than viewing your exercise as a rigid routine to control and sculpt your body, what would happen if you viewed it as your body’s chance for play, expression and creativity?
It is true that novelty wears off, and if you do the same workout on repeat you will almost certainly be falling out of love with it, or at the very least not getting as much out of it as you used to. This doesn’t mean throwing in your memberships and starting again, just try injecting one new workout into your routine every week or two. Almost every studio now does an intro offer or a one-off class price, so this is usually easy to do. It’s a good idea to leave your ego at the door, as you may not be the best in the room first go! Approach the experience with a sense of play and curiosity for maximum enjoyment. (And if you do decide you want to switch workouts completely? That’s okay! We’re allowed to change our minds!)
What did you love to do as a child, but have long forgotten with the responsibilities and seriousness of adulting? Round up some friends and play backyard cricket, go skating, or jump on the trampoline. Movement is movement and the hormones you release through the positivity of play will give you a renewed love for moving your body.
Perhaps don’t show up to your next F45 class in a superhero costume (though we’ve been known to do that at my F45 studio!), but rather think again when you grab the same pair of tights and old tee. Feeling kick-ass on the outside lights a new fire on the inside to fuel your training. So that work out gear you splashed out on but don’t wear because it’s “too nice”? PUT IT ON, SISTER!
No, don’t ditch your entire social circle – just try working out with new people. We get comfortable in both our movement patterns and our motivation. It’s awesome to workout with your bestie, but when it comes to loving the workout itself, then some fresh motivation and new social interaction can change what you get out of it.
This is perhaps the nugget of gold and it is two-fold. First, replace your need to track and count your calorie burn with feeling your workout in your body. Be mindful of your movement, feel your muscles, your breath, the sensations of energy and blood flow. Be more present and you’ll be more in love with what your body can do. Second, make fitness fun. Working out is a privilege not punishment, and you have the choice to love it! If what you’re currently doing makes you dread the thought of it, stop doing it! Choose something else and have fun with it. For example, my favourite type of exercise combines all 5 of these tips as I throw on the leotard and legwarmers and listen to the best 80s tracks at aerobics class.
If your workout has become predictable, try one of these injections of play to fall head over heels in love again.