Well that sure sounds negative, doesn’t it? Isn’t a message about health and fitness supposed to be all roses, sunshine and butterflies?
Well, oftentimes the toughest messages contain the most value. We all have our own reasons for undertaking a fitness program, however, for all our individuality and uniqueness humans are fairly easily divided into general groups. Similar kinds of behaviour, similar means of motivation, similar results.
‘Fun’ is the catch-phrase of the moment when it comes to fitness and the hopeful key to motivate us to action. Many hope their fitness activity will be fun and many trainers are quite happy to sell us on that. However, the reality is, a fitness regimen is not always going to be “fun”. Does that mean that training can’t be enjoyable? Not at all but we don’t exercise for the sake of it, we exercise for the effects. If your motivation is in the moment then that’s exactly how long it’s going to last.
Fun doesn’t motivate us through plateaus. Fun doesn’t motivate us when we just don’t feel like it. Fun doesn’t drive us through roadblocks. To change the state of our health and fitness we need to work hard and consistently. (Critically important to our motivation is working with a trainer to the extent possible to ensure we’re doing what’s right for us. Nothing is less motivating than feeling like you don’t know what you’re doing!) When fun becomes hard we generally lose our interest. However consistent, deliberate effort at something productive satisfies to a much greater extent than fun. And we’ll be more likely to stick with it at those times it becomes a bit of a grind.
Trainers and fitness instructors would do well to stop blurring this vital distinction and highlight how putting in a solid, well-directed effort is what will be truly rewarding. We have to start from a solid foundation and that starts with the right motivation to improve. With that in place, reaching important fitness milestones that can genuinely change our life will be within our grasp. And, ultimately, nothing is more rewarding, motivating and ‘fun’ than results!