Sports? Absolutely not so much. Sticks, balls, shin guards, scores...oh my word, I have the cold sweats just typing those horrifying words. But regular old exercise? I've always been able to do.
I'm lucky, I like to work up a sweat and feel all burny. My husband on the other hand? He'd rather grow a boob on his back than skip to the corner and jog back home.
My point is this: Some people like to exercise and some people hate to exercise, but either way, you should really freaking exercise! Allow me to convince you...
1) Exercise makes your brain release endorphins and makes you feel all happy. Aside from that, exercise is now recognized as an anti-depressant. For real. Check out this article by this really smart professor from Boston University. He's cute and I believe him.
2) Sweating is good for you. Why? Well, a lot of reasons. But think about this...sweating is one of the major mechanisms for your body to get rid of muck, and gunk, and biproducts, and toxins. Really, if you're a regular heavy sweater, you don't have to worry about shopping around so much for colon cleanses and whatnot--you're already doing a pretty good job of sweating your excess crud right out through your pores.
This is also why you should never lick your treadmill.
3) If you're an exerciser, you can justify all kinds of adorable purchases from the active section of TJ Maxx. For real, have you been there lately? If you don't have an interest in wearing the world's cutest NorthFace half-zip for only $17.99, then let's just face it, you're a wreck of a person.
4) Once your find what you're into, exercise is honestly fun. Is it fun every single minute? No. But in general, bike rides, interval walks, dodge ball, ultimate frisbee...fun.
5) Movement and endurance are basic life skills. A few weeks ago, I saw a little boy dart into the parking lot at Sam's Club, and his mom wasn't able to chase after him. She had a really hard time changing directions, hopping a curb, and generally keeping up. My heart totally sunk for her. Motherhood is so stinkin' exhausting all on it's own--a basic level of fitness makes it more manageable.
Maybe you don't have a toddler who makes you feel like your hair's about to burst into flames, but you probably do have big bags of flour to lift at the grocery store, a lawn to mow, a fun run to benefit a friend....see where I'm going?
6) At our core, human beings like to move--and that's why I have a hard time believing it when people say things like, "I have no interest in exercise," or "I really hate moving and sweating." Don't get me wrong, on the surface, people hate these things, but deep down, we all want to be active. Think about it--out all these activities, in your wildest dreams, which ones seem most appealing to you?
Hiking around Acadia Park with some friends.
Playing soccer with your kids.
Doing tricks on a trampoline.
Playing video games.
Taking a Dance class.
Facebooking for a few hours.
Now don't get me wrong here. I looooove TV as much as the next guy, but my wildest dreams only have me watching TV while I sit on Dr. Drew's lap in Southern California.
6) Any idea what gives people heart problems? Family history, diet, lack of conditioning, and stress. Stress. Stupid, stupid stress makes people sick in so many ways. Now I'm stressed that I'll get sick from stress. But guess what? Exercise is an awesome stress reliever, and does a good job of helping people move on from disappointing and difficult parts of their days. It's almost like a magical reset button.
7) Exercise has a good chance of giving you a longer life, and making that life a lot more healthy and enjoyable.
8) Every time you finish a workout, whether it was your best ever or your worst ever, you just accomplished something hard. That feels good. Tackling hard things helps people a good sense of self. When people start exercising, they often worry that they'll feel inferior, or fat, or silly, or embarrassed. Honestly, 99% of the time I see the opposite effect. Exercise builds self esteem.
9) Exercise can be a hobby, and it's cool to have hobbies. Trust me, there's nothing worse than going on a date and when the hot guy's all, "So...what are you into?" You're like, "Ummmm....errrr.....well....Twitter? Shopping? I love to sleep!" Way more awesome to be able to say something like, "Tennis."
10) And finally, exercise is a great way to make new friends. Join a bowling league, or a spin class, or a soccer team, or a running club. Sweating your balls off, it builds bonds. Commiseration is a foolproof way to make a new friend.
So. Did I convince you? In the next post, I'll help you learn how to get started!