Run, Forrest! Run!

“That day, for no particular reason, I decided to go for a little run”. This quote just so happens to come from one of my favorite movies, Forrest Gump. His motivation to run was simply because he wanted to run, or maybe it went all the way back to when he was being chased by bullies and Jenny yelled out her very memorable line, “Run,  Forrest! Run!”.

Everyone’s motivation to run, or exercise, is different. Some people like it, some people despise it. Regardless of which person you are, there has to be a type of motivation out there for you to get your running shoes on and to get going.

For example, my motivation to exercise is to continuously live a better life, and stay on track to feel healthy and happy. For some people, this isn’t enough.

There are six types of motivation that can work for just about everyone, and they include   achievement, growth, power, social, fear, and incentive. However, if these seem too advanced for you, there are other ways to get motivated.

You can be motivated by your music playlist, your workout apparel, the cute guy/girl at the gym, the various fitness activities you can complete, the steam room/sauna after you’re finished, the clothes that will feel a lot bigger in a month, the number of miles you run… you get the point.

Motivation comes from within, and there can definitely be influencers that are impactful (like me, I hope). If you don’t think you can be motivated by yourself to work out, then you should definetly speak with someone that enjoys doing what you dread the most. There is a reason why some people love it, and all it takes is asking “why”.

So if you’re lacking motivation, try it out anyways, and one day, for no particular reason, just decide to go for a little run. See how far this technique takes you, and maybe you’ll pick up some motivation along the way!


Strength – it’s all in your head 

Do you ever feel like you’re so strong that, you know, you think you can lift a monument… hey, maybe one day! 

But actually, it could be possible. Strength is all in your mind. Apparently, the thing that stops you from lifting heavier weights isn’t your ability to do so, but your brain’s incapability of believing that you are as strong as your body was designed for. 

Did you know that chimps are as much as 4x stronger than humans

Excuse me, what? 

Yeah.. so apparently our nervous systems exert more control over our muscles. In other words, chimps go bananas while we only have the ability to go, well 1/4 of that.

We have superpowers that we aren’t even aware of, and it’s superstrength, but our brain blocks it out to conserve energy

Except, maybe it’s for our own good. We don’t need to be lifting such heavy weights in order to feel strong. Our bodies are just protecting us from injuries that usually come along with lifting more than we can withstand (momentarily). 
So, maybe now you’re thinking “I want to be as strong as a chimp – let’s see how much heavier I can lift than any other human has done before (6,270lb backlift). But be aware that your brain is telling your body “ok enough is enough”. Listen to your body to avoid injuries – and remember, strength isn’t just about lifting the heaviest objects! 

Not a Yogi, Just Love Yoga

The gym may not be for everyone. Lifting may not be for everyone. Running long or short distance may not be for everyone. Boxing or kickboxing may not be for everyone. Spin class or boot camp may not be for everyone. HIIT may not be for everyone. There is a type of excersie that is for everyone, however. I’ve named so many fitness activities, so which one is it, you may ask? 

Well, if you couldn’t figure it out by the title or this post, it’s yoga. Yoga is for everyone, and if you are thinking to yourself right now – yoga isn’t for me, what’s this crazy chick talking about – then you’re wrong (unless you’re totally dead set on hating yoga, then you do you man).

 I say yoga is for everyone because it’s not just a great activity that stretches your entire body, works on your balance, provides your muscles with strength, and teaches you endurance – but it sooooothes your soul. It’s also accesible to any age group, since you have the power to move at your own pace. 

If you’re a bodybuilder, a football player, 70 year old woman, you can do yoga because there are various types of yoga. Some are intense and vigorous, and others are relaxing and meditative. So just because you aren’t flexible or your body can’t bend the way you see some people bending, you can, and should, still do yoga! And everyone needs to relax once in a while, don’t you think so?

You can practice yoga from the comfort of your own home, in a studio, at work, in a bathroom (if you please) – the point is, it’s easy to do it anywhere. And it’s non-judgmental, so as long as you aren’t hurting yourself, you really can’t do it wrong. 

Coming from someone who thrives with gloves and a boxing bag, I enjoy yoga because it allows me to RELAX and take off some stress. And I’ll be honest, I’m on my phone a lot, so being able to detach myself from technology isn’t such a bad thing.

“Better indeed is knowledge than mechanical practice. Better than knowledge is meditation. But better still is surrender of attachment to results, because there follows immediate peace.“ Bhagavad Gita.

Overtraining – Say What Now?

Recently, there’s no time to take pics at the gym because I’m too busy getting the grind on. Except, am I grinding a little bit too hard? Overtraining, as much as we all hate to see it, is very much a thing. Progress takes time and dedication, and you (or I) won’t see change in a day. Busting your ass at the gym for 3 hours a day isn’t as effective as you think. Overtraining can actually cause halted progress . According to Muscle Model champion and transformation trainer Micah LaCerte, “When you’re overtraining, your body is going in the opposite direction of growth, because your muscles are torn and all you’re doing is re-tearing them again“. Easy enough to understand, right? So, get your grind on – but take it easy sometimes too. Training is good for your body, but there are alternatives to consistently putting tremendous stress on your body – like implementing more low intensity exercises into your routine.

Zen Spot

Think about your favorite spot in the whole entire world. This could be an island on the Bahamas, a ski mountain in Vermont, a little village in Eastern Europe, a swing in your backyard, your school library – any place in the world (I just named a few of mine). Now, picture yourself in that place, and think about the comfort and gratification you feel tingling throughout your entire body when you are present at this exact spot. Now that you’ve got all the hard stuff out of the way, take this spot with you to a place that challenges you to doubt your reality. Sounds kinda impossible – right? Wrong. If you can take with you the feeling you get when you are in your favorite spot or in a peaceful, crazy, lively environment that soothes you (whatever your flavor), you can enjoy just about anything. And that includes the most dreadful spots in the entire world – the doctor’s office, a steaming, hot desert, your 9-5 job, and most specifically, THE GYM. If you can create a habit of making the gym your zen spot, or your favorite spot in the whole entire world (just by transferring your feelings), you will slowly, but surely come to realize it has its own comfort and gratification, and you will love it just as much (or maybe even more) than any other spot in the world.

Balance on the low 

Not pictured: me struggling immensely on the Bosu Balance Trainer, which is basically just a fancy term for an exercise ball cut in half with a flat side that sits on the ground. The point of this piece of equipment is to teach you balance and stability. Training your body to stay balanced in an unstable environments is just providing yourself with more flexibility to work out harder and more creatively at the gym. Balance begins in your core, which goes farther than rock solid abs – it also includes your hips and glutes. Some of the benefits of including balance training into your daily routine are body awareness,  coordination, reaction time, and long term health. So, next time you think you’re a master at squats – take a Bosu Balance Trainer, and try squatting on it. Not as easy as it seems, huh? 

Hydration is key 

Don’t forget to hydrate before, during and after your workout. Dehydration leads to muscle fatigue and loss of coordination, and the last thing we want when we’re exercising is to lose the ability to perform. It is recommended to drink 7-10 ounces of fluid every 10 to 20 minutes during exercise. Some symptoms to look out for if you’re not hydrating properly are tiredness, muscle cramps and dizziness. Basically, drink your fluids, whether that’s a sports drink or water, and don’t be stubborn about water weight – its VERY normal.