How To Get Exercise When You Hate To Exercise
Getting Enough Aerobic Exercise
Everyone's telling us we need to exercise these days. The recommended form of exercise for most of us is aerobic exercise.
You know the kind I mean, the kind that makes your body require oxygen which in turn makes you work out really, really hard.
So what do you do if you happen to hate to exercise? Maybe you just don't like to get all sweaty and out of breath. Or maybe you just rebel against the regimented way that most people approach physical fitness training.
But you still want to exercise and be relatively fit and healthy. What can you do?
There are many ways to get exercise that aren't boring, that will still get your heart rate up and keep you in the aerobic zone. Yet some of these will make you forget that you're actually getting exercise.
The first step towards getting exercise when you hate it in the first place is to get a new mindset. Thinking less about exercising and more about doing something pleasurable instead is a great step in the right direction.
Take a Hike
This is a great way to exercise without even meaning to. It's relatively painless if you start slow. Find a place you've always wanted to see nearby and then go hike to it.
Make sure you take plenty of water, wear appropriate clothing for the weather and take a cell phone. Even take your dog with you - better for you and better for him too. Or take a friend or family. Distractions are always helpful when you're doing something that isn't your first choice.
Start out small and build on your time out in nature. Rather than think of hiking as a form of exercise or something you can't stand, think of it as a wonderful time to enjoy the great outdoors.
Even if you come home with a blister or tired feet, you'll probably be better for the time spent and the refreshed spirit it should give you.
Hikes come in all shapes and forms and can usually be done at any time of year depending on your clothing and resources. Even a snow shoe hike can be an exhilirating trip in winter. Take your camera for added enjoyment and/or distraction.
Or just hike to a friend's house or across town. You'd be amazed at the things we miss while riding in a car or on public transporation to and from places.
In inclement weather, take hikes around the shopping mall. Window shop to your heart's content while simply walking.
Get on a Bike
Just like hiking, riding a bike somewhere new or even somewhere familiar can be a fantastic way to exercise for the person who hates to exercise.
Tons of bike styles are available and even if you haven't ridden much, you'll find it comes back to you once you reacclimate yourself to the mechanics.
Like other forms of activity and exercise, start slow and build on it.
Try riding your bike to work. It's great for the environment, saves gas and makes for a healthier you. You don't have to tell yourself it's a form of exercise. It's really a form of transportation and if you happen to burn some calories or get healthier doing it, that's a bonus.
Riding bikes can be a great family activity and no one has to think about the exercise they're getting.
Make sure you wear appropriate clothing and always wear a helmet, no matter what age you are. Try to ride in areas that are relatively traffic-free for a more enjoyable ride. Try bike trails or bike paths for total enjoyment of the activity.
Dance the Night Away
Another great form of exercise without really exercising is to start dancing.
You can dance at home to music CD's.
Take up tap dancing or learn square dancing.
You can do jazzercise workouts on DVD which are all based on music.
Sign up for a class in belly dancing, line dancing or swing. Take something you've always wanted to learn to dance and have fun with it.
You'll feel better, get in your aerobic exercise and not even know you're exercising.
Dance can be one of the most entertaining ways to exercise because even while you're doing aerobic activity, you're having fun.
Most people who love to dance have a tendency to get into it. They can easily get in a healthy workout all the while enjoying music and probably other people's company.
Take Up a Sport
It's never too old to play a sport. If you've always wanted to play basketball or soccer, no matter what your age is, there are almost always age appropriate groups you can join. For instance, sign up for an over 50's soccer league or softball team.
After you join a league, you can easily increase your aerobic level by practicing. Maybe run drills with other team members or practice the mechanics of the sport on your own.
You can easily hit tennis balls off a wall to improve your swing, work on your timing and your footwork.
Practice dribbling the basketball and trying shots from layups to 3-pointers.
Go to the local high school and practice kicking the soccer ball and doing drills.
If you sign up for a golf league, go to the driving range regularly and hit balls; work the putting green to improve your short game.
Play catch with your husband or one of your kids - or even one of your teammates when you join the company softball team.
You can also learn to ride a horse. This is another way to see new places and be physically active while not technically working out.
Clean Your House
Did you know that you can actually get in a lot of exercise by just cleaning your house? It's true. Here are some great exercise-packed chores anyone can do around your house:
- Vacuuming - do it fast and get in some aerobics
- Climbing stairs at a quick pace
- Lifting things and move them from place to place
- Scrubbing furiously
- Gardening and weeding
- Chopping wood
- Stripping wood or furniture
- Cleaning windows
- Washing the car
All of these things have physical activity written all over them. Some are more strenuous than others but if performed quickly and repetitively, these are great ways to work out without having to go to the gym.
Here are some more ideas on how to get aerobic exercise at home.
Get Physical and Work Out
Even the person who hates to exercise can participate in an exercise program.
A great way to exercise is to get a Wii and play games instead of exercising. You won't even realize you're working out.
Or you can try some of the suggested great not really exercise ideas above. Also watch the video below for ideas on how to exercise even when you're watching the kids.
You can try a swim aerobics class at your local pool. It might say exercise but it really isn't once you start experiencing the healing properties of water. This is a great way to socialize and to get about 5 times the benefit of regular exercise. Or just plain swimming is a wonderfully relaxing activity and keeps you in shape.
People who hate to exercise find many ways to stay physically fit. Some do it by skipping, kick boxing, jumping rope or doing calisthentics.
Whatever way you like to remain active, that can be your form of exercise. Even if you hate to exercise, having fun and doing something is better than doing nothing.
How do you exercise even if you hate to exercise? Leave a comment and share your thoughts and ideas.