Let's play a little game, shall we? I'd like for you to imagine exercise personified. In fact, let's make it a proper name and capitalize it: Exercise. For the sake of this article, Exercise is male. So far so good?
Now, describe your relationship with Exercise to me. Was he a part of your past--one you think fondly of but never expect to meet again? Was his a short-lived romance, leaving you tingly, sweaty and satisfyingly sore, but bored after a couple of weeks? Did you love him, but the lackluster results of your relationship left you feeling unrequited? Maybe you enjoyed each other equally, but you got too busy and stopped making time for him. Is he someone you see here and there, hoping for more frequent interactions, but are too insecure to make a commitment? Does he hurt you every time he sees you, making you unsure of yourself? Or perhaps you're still waiting to meet him, hoping that life will magically motivate you to seek him. Conversely, maybe you're addicted to him, leaving you insecure, exhausted and desperate.
Did any of those scenarios describe your relationship with Exercise? Do you love him and hate him at the same time? Do you want to break-up and make-up all in the same day (the answer's always yes if you've just done burpees!)? Guess what? Even fitness fanatics are occasionally tempted to trade Exercise for the next best thing (like flirty Mr. Fast n' Cleanse, rich Dr. Injectable or endearing Diet Pill).
But perhaps the better question to ask is, "How would you describe your relationship with your body?" Because when you consider that, the issue is much less about whether you love or hate Exercise, and much more about whether you love or hate your body. When you hate your body, you're likely going to dislike Exercise, because it makes you very aware of yourself, and your perceived limitations and flaws. Or it may make you obsessed with Exercise, as you seek to run from the body you've been given.
However, when you love your body--imperfections and all--your relationship with Exercise becomes healthy, supportive and nurturing. It brings out the best in you. It makes you want to go on double dates with Good Nutrition and Rest.
Within the next 24 hours, what's one thing you can do to start restoring your love for your body again? Get more sleep tonight? Eat a healthy breakfast? Make time for a little exercise? Avoid snacking on junk food? If you're feeling particularly amorous, pick two!
Perform as many burpees or squat thrusts (squat thrusts are burpees without the jump at the top) as you can in 20 secs. Rest for 10 secs. Repeat for 8 rounds. (Challenge option 1: Add a pushup at the bottom of the burpee. Option 2: hold a low squat during each 10 sec rest.)
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Molly is a wife, mom,
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I am not a registered dietitian, nor a medical professional. My blog is a representation of my views and experiences, which are not intended as medical advice. While I am a certified personal trainer, descriptions of things I eat and exercises I perform may not be suitable for everyone. Please speak with a medical professional before making any changes to your current routine.