Which of these scenarios strikes a cord for you?
As I age, I clearly realize intellectually the value of regular exercise. I regularly recite the mantra “Use it or lose it.” But, like many things, the mantra can remain in the mind without being utilized in the body.
Scenario 1: I get up, don’t feel particularly perky and invent a suitable excuse why I can’t possibly go to the gym. I spend the rest of the day feeling somewhat guilty and defensive because I didn’t move forward toward my goal of three workouts per week. I also notice I seem sluggish and a bit low on energy.
Scenario 2: I get up, don’t feel especially energetic and formulate multiple reasons why I can’t go to the gym. I note these reasons, but put on my exerise clothes and shoes and head out toward the car. While driving to the gym I tell myself I really should take it easy because I’m at low energy. “No sense pushing myself too hard,” I tell myself. I enter the gym, swipe my membership card and wander reluctantly to the first piece of equipment I planned to use for the day. I still am not excited about working out. “I’ll just do a few easy sets and then call it a day.” The first set may actually feel too heavy but I keep at it. As I continue to do my routine, I notice my resistance dropping away. I’m starting to feel energized and more focused. Another set and I’m now fully committed to completing my full routine. I may even exceed my personal goals for the day.
Throughout the rest of the day, I feel great. I kept my promise to myself to complete my routine: during the workout I felt “the pump” that strength training can provide; and my energy flow throughout my day is exceptional.
Kind of proves the validity of Nike’s mantra, “Just do it,” doesn’t it?