I was in track in middle school and seriously hated every moment (besides socializing at the track meets). Let’s be honest, that’s the only reason I actually went out for it. You got out of school for the track meets and got to hang out with your friends and meet people from other towns. The practices and actually running at the meets was horrible. I was not fast, so I got stuck doing the mile and the 2 mile races. No one else wanted to do those (duh) and I wasn’t fast enough to do sprints or long legged enough for hurdles or long jump. I was so slow, I got lapped in the 2 mile race almost every single meet. It was embarrassing and so ridiculous. Needless to say, ended up not going out for track in high school. Running was not fun for me.
I see so many people comment on Facebook saying they just can’t workout. They don’t have time or they don’t enjoy it. I hear people say, “I can’t believe people actually enjoy running.” or “I could never sit on my butt on a spin bike for 45 minutes.” or “Classes just aren’t for me.”
Those things could all very well be true, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t SOME form of exercise that you would enjoy.
In college I gained WAY too much weight my Freshman year and decided I had to do something about it, so I joined a gym and started working out. I would do the elliptical and use the weight machines, but never had much of a structure. I just went when I wanted to and did what I felt like that day. I started seeing progress and realized my hard work was paying off. I went through spurts during college where I would workout and then sometimes I wouldn’t. I kept that cycle up until I graduated.
After graduating college, I saw an ad for a fitness bootcamp that was starting and I knew I had to try it. I needed the accountability and loved having someone tell me what to do instead of trying to think of workouts on my own. I got hooked. It was the perfect mix of cardio and strength training and I loved the community of women I worked out with. Eventually I ended up teaching the classes and loved it. I got to workout for free and share my passion for fitness with others. When we got married and I moved to the farm, I was so sad to be leaving my bootcamp ladies. I continued to do the workouts on my own (somewhat), but it wasn’t the same. I needed a change. So I started running. I don’t know why, but I felt like I needed something to work toward. I hated running before, why would this time be any different?
I think the biggest thing was that I decided to start. No one was telling me I had to run or to go a certain distance. It was on me. Somewhere along the way I fell in love. 5 half marathons and countless other races later. Something about cranking up the music running down the country roads, watching the sun come up was just so good for the soul. I also loved the challenge. Can I go just one more mile? How about two? It really became something I enjoyed. Looking back at those middle school track days I wonder how in the world I got to this point.
Eventually I decided to join a gym that only offered fitness classes and began teaching my bootcamp classes again. It was the perfect mix of getting the strength training in a couple days a week, enjoying some “girl time” and then running on the other days. After having Brooks I quit teaching the classes because it just didn’t fit in with daycare pickup, but I missed it. Last summer I decided to start the bootcamp up in our town this time, in the park and once again, enjoyed the “girl time” and the accountability of teaching the classes.
This fall, after the weather started cooling off and we had to stop the outdoor bootcamp I started meeting with a personal trainer who was a former student at DWU when I worked there! She has been so great. I’ve loved the extra push she gives me and the variety of workouts that I would never be able to come up with on my own. For me, the winter months are so hard because I really despise the treadmill and struggle getting the miles in. My running always seems to pick back up when the weather warms up, so this has been a great change for me.
All this to say, if you don’t think exercise is for you, maybe you’re not trying the right thing. Don’t give up.
Don’t think you like running? Walk instead. Or ride your bike. Join a fitness class or hire a personal trainer. Need motivation? Find a workout partner or walking buddy that’s going to help keep you accountable. Don’t be afraid to change things up. Clearly, I get bored with the same old thing. I think having variety is what keeps me interested in fitness. I love the way I feel and am so much happier, but ultimately for me, I need to have the accountability or a goal to work toward.
Don’t be so hard on yourself. It’s a process and you just need to find your niche. Keep looking. There’s something out there for you.