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From past experience, I’ve noticed extremely better fitness results from learning to love what it
is that you do. For some people, this could mean simple written/routine free-weight exercises,
starting with chest and ending the week with arms. For others, it’s about hopping on that bike
and/or treadmill and running 5 miles a day.
Learning to love however, is different from naturally engaging in something that’s enjoyable.
Routines can be easy, and not very strenuous; but after all, they are just routines. So it’s with
my dear advice that as practitioners of exercise and fitness we teach ourselves new things,
while also teaching our body the same. This is inherently true with things like dance. More
specifically, Zumba is an excellent example of something different, fun, and unique. The ability
to genuinely enhance cardiovascular function and endurance, while practicing muscle memory
routines effectively exercises the whole body. And simply put, it’s fun.
The most practical and enjoyable way to stay in shape undoubtedly is by playing sports. Joining
a soccer league on Sundays or perhaps playing something as simple as intramural dodge ball
or kickball can successfully burn thousands of calories in just one day. The sheer competitive
nature of these athletic activities drives the body further and beyond, and although strenuous at
times, people crave the struggle and willingness to become better. There comes a certain rush
that comes with fast paced activities, which brings me to my next point.
Things like mountain climbing, biking, quad-racing, fishing, golfing, etc … – These are all great
ways to actively stay in shape, and they’re quite enjoyable as well! A sudden increase in
endorphins will surely make anybody’s day brighter. Also, almost all of these activities take
place outdoors, which captures much needed vitamins from the sun, further enhancing the
overall experience. Keep in mind however, it is important to get your heart rate up every now
and then, so switching on and off amongst these and cardiovascular exercises (i.e. ” treadmills)
will keep your body guessing while enhancing overall fitness.
Sports and Dance are both a leisurely and/or competitive practice, but can also be the most
effective way to exercise. Treadmills and
Ellipticals will shed weight and enhance
muscle strength/endurance, but will never capture the soul and rhythm that dance makes so
enjoyable. Meanwhile, the competitive nature and drive that comes with playing sports will
always be an important part of everybody’s lives. But again, it’s important to diversify your
fitness, and be able to incorporate pleasure and strain. Attempt to pull one’s self away from
everyday fitness equipment and home gyms; pick up a class of zumba and/or sign up for an
intramural softball league and you’ll be on your way to a healthier, more enjoyable lifestyle.