Doing 10 push-ups or 30 seconds of jumping jacks during a commercial break sounds great. Doing a couple of lunges while you're waiting for the pot of water to boil seems like something easy you could do.
So, why aren't you doing them?
At our recent exercise class, the instructor recommended doing a couple of push-ups, lunges, and squats during short, 30-second breaks during the day.
Everyone thought it was a good idea.
But, then she said something very interesting: "But, even I don't do that!"
We had a great discussion on why that is, coming up with some fascinating theories about why we just can't motivate ourselves to do just a couple of moments of exercise during the day.
No, You Aren't Lazy – You're Relaxed
The group of us certainly weren't lazy, we all came to the exercise class three times a week, and each of us had a dedicated routine outside the classes. We walked, gardened, or exercised in some other way.
None of us went home and just sat around and watched TV, although we enjoy some shows.
So, what's going on?
Coming to our exercise class, we intended to exercise. We have the intention of going to class and doing what we need to. It's a dedicated, set aside time during the day to do our exercises.
We also set an intention for watching tv. We intend to relax, enjoy ourselves, and for some shows, just zone out.
Relaxation and exercise don't go together. (Yes, yoga is relaxing, but still exercise)
When we sit in front of the TV, we are looking to relax our bodies and enjoy ourselves. Breaking that mindset to do exercise is difficult.
For most of us, it wasn't that we chose not to do the exercises during the commercials, we just didn't remember. Our minds have a difficult time connecting exercise and relaxation.
And honestly, your body doesn't want to do squats, lunges, or push-ups when it wants to relax. It's stressful on your muscles to jump between relaxation and exercise. It becomes uncomfortable, and your body avoids that discomfort.
Change Your Mindset, Change Your Life
So, rather than trying to get 5 minutes of exercising between commercials, you might be better off putting together a whole routine during the whole show. You can enjoy watching the show and be in the proper mindset to exercise.
The mindset of going to an exercise class or having a dedicated time to do some sort of exercise is what helps you be prepared to do the work necessary during your class.
Much like people going to work, you mentally prepare for your exercise class or workday. It's easier to do than trying to fit in between relaxation and rest activities.
How To Get Into Doing – Whether It's 30 Minutes or 5 Minutes
- Make A Decision
If you only have a few minutes to exercise, make sure that's a dedicated time. Whether it's 5 minutes, 30 minutes, an hour, or more, make a decision that you're going to do it.
- Find Your Compelling Why
Discover why. Wanting to exercise, lose weight, learn a new hobby, or basically do anything requires a why. For most people, being told you need to do it doesn't work. You need to have a desire, a reason that goes beyond just interest. It has to be a reason that if you did not do this, the results would be so much worse.
- Plan When You Will Do It
Nothing you really want can be done without a plan. Have a timetable, set aside minutes or hours and a consistent routine. You can certainly experiment with different types of classes, exercise routines, and teachers until you find something you truly enjoy. Just don't leave it up to chance, have a plan.
- Keep Track And Have A Reward
Once you start your exercise routine, dedicate a reward at various milestones. It could be at a certain weight loss, time frame, or a number of classes. But you need some goal, particularly a short-term goal, to give yourself. Most people work better with small chunks that give small awards, rather than waiting a long time for a big reward.
Exercise does wonders for your body, and you should do what it takes to get something in every day. If it's 5 minutes on a commercial break, be sure you're dedicated to do that. And don't beat yourself up too much if you forget.