10 Things To Ask Yourself To Make Exercise More Enjoyable


Do you remember the old LIFE cereal commercial with Mikey, the kid who “hates everything”? His brothers said that LIFE is “good for you”, and do you recall their reaction? They assumed it would taste bad!


And what happened when Mikey tried it? He liked it! (Thus the famous tag-line “Hey Mikey!”) What was the reaction of his brothers then? Naturally, they wanted to try it too.

Have you ever avoided things that you thought you wouldn’t like or wouldn’t be able to do, but when you tried them you found that you were pleasantly surprised? Maybe it was a sport you’d never tried, a new hairstyle someone suggested, or (think back for this one, now) new technology, like when e-mailing and texting became “the thing”? I remember being SO frustrated with the touchpad on my once-new laptop that I cursed it repeatedly for DAYS…until I got used to it. Now I can hardly stand to use a mouse on a desktop computer!

So I want to encourage you to look at activity & exercise in a new light, which just might motivate you to try some new things, like Mikey!

If you are already content with your current level of activity and physical fitness, then let this reinforce those good habits…and maybe it will generate some more of them!


Here are a few key questions that can help you decide which type of exercise / activity you might like to try. Be honest about your answers, as this may determine how successful your exercise program may be.

  1. How physically fit do I consider myself at this time, on a scale of 1 to 10 (1 being very poor, 10 being extremely fit)
  2. What would I like to achieve with an exercise program?
  3. Do I prefer to exercise alone or with others?
  4. Do I prefer to exercise indoors or outdoors?
  5. How much time am I willing to spend exercising on a daily or weekly basis?
  6. What time of day do I prefer to exercise? Will this fit into my current schedule?
  7. What changes might I need to make to incorporate exercise into my regular routine?
  8. How far am I willing to travel to exercise?
  9. How much money am I willing to spend on exercise equipment, clothing / shoes, classes, and / or club membership(s)?
  10. Which of the following activities do I enjoy, or would be willing to try (and brainstorm to add others as you think of them!):
    Ice Skating
    Rollerblading/Roller Skating
    Weight Lifting
    Martial Arts (Karate, Judo, MMA, etc.)
    Group Exercise Classes (Zumba, Step Aerobics, BodyPump, Zabata, Boot Camp, Cardio Circuit, etc.)
    Small Group Training


Taking all of the above into consideration, what are your thoughts? Does it seem as if you created excuses for yourself, or justified your current situation, as you answered the questions?

Sometimes it takes just shifting our perspective about what we feel we “should” do to what we WANT to do. Think of the difference between a child who views physical activity as something fun and enjoyable rather than when we grow up and whine “Oh man, I need to get my butt to the gym after work, & I’m tired”.  😉 Wouldn’t it be nice to get that feeling back? You CAN!!!

Also, don’t discount those everyday things you do, because they count too…walking your dog(s), parking further away from your destination (the mall for example) and walking more, playing outside with your kids (helping my son practice football, playing frisbee or croquet, and running with him are all things I love to do).

Review the above questions again, and reinforce that it IS possible to have a healthy lifestyle that includes physical activity. Often we need to find modifications, and adapt our schedules to not only make it work, but make it something we look forward to instead of dreading it.

  • How might you begin? What are some steps you can take TODAY to get closer to your goals?
  • What you are willing to commit yourself to? If you know your time is so limited that traveling to and from a gym just isn’t feasible, but you enjoy group classes…consider online resources and/or DVD’s, along with support from friends/family, or even online groups with similar goals.
    I have been so pleased with how much support I have received from a Facebook group I joined…and shocked at the genuine connections I have made with people in the group. They inspire and encourage me, and believe in me when I feel like I just want to grab a box of cookies and sit in front of the tv instead of attacking my goals!
  • How will you create personal accountability for this plan? Again, maybe you require support from peers…or maybe you need someone in a different role, like a coach, personal trainer, or someone who specializes in whatever activity you are drawn to (like a yoga professional…hint hint).

I look forward to hearing what inspires you, and what steps you take to make exercise fun again!

This post is part of the FYB “31 Days to Quiet the Voices in Your Head” series.
Read more about it HERE.

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