A large part of fitness is making a commitment. We know we need exercise, a good diet, and the time to take care of our body, mind, and spirit. Nonetheless, it is so easy to rationalize: busy day, exercise tomorrow, not feeling all that good today – the exercise can wait. Why does this happen? It happens to all of us as we juggle family, careers, and multiple options that seem to be tugging at the corners of our life. But fitness should be one of the driving forces. It should be a priority and most important, when you do not feel like exercising, that’s when you should. It’s a routine that very easy to break.
Yesterday was one of those days for me - long drive, tired, and thinking about sitting down. Instead, Kate and I took a walk, just three miles, and guess what. I felt better, I felt energized and everything else that I wanted to do was easier.
We have been motivated by a big goal and a deadline. That works. We wish you could all find as motivating an idea as we have, but there are limits and we know that. We want to look better, feel better, and lose weight, but those goals falter from day to day and hour to hour. Consequently, you need something more concrete like a vacation, an event, or a reward. And then you need to set a pattern from the day you choose the goal until the date actually arrives.
I knew I wanted to walk 2000 miles in the year preceding our hike around Lake Superior and I began marking both the day’s mileage and the cumulative miles on a calendar and watched the progress. I also had a countdown of days that I was working with and that was a constant reminder that I had to make steady progress or I could not suddenly add a few hundred miles in the last week. And it worked.
Now the challenge. A colleague pledged to me that he was going to maintain a 15 mile a day workout at his fitness center for the duration of our walk! He is motivating himself with our challenge. Think about your own health needs and consider a pledge to yourself and to your health.
4/30/2010 at 3:49 PM