But I don’t feel like exercising …- The Harvard Health Blog


Not long ago the first fitness magazine was published, and a list may have been followed shortly after, to rank the best fitness equipment. The tradition continues, with the implicit message: Use this and the exercise will be yours.

This is part of the problem Dr.. Daniel E. Lieberman, Professor of Biological Sciences and Human Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University. There is no single “best” thing to achieve physical fitness. Moreover, people already know. They’ve heard the federal recommendation for 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. They understand that exercise is good for them.

Knowledge about exercise is still not stimulating

Before you can answer why, it pays to take a look at the history. Before the Industrial Revolution, people used to fetch water and climb stairs because they had to. But then, technology, like elevators and cars, made life and work easier. Exercise has become something that people have to make time for and Wants To do. Not surprisingly, they usually don’t. “It’s a basic instinct to avoid physical activity when it is neither necessary nor rewarding,” he says.

It may sound like being healthy will be eligible as necessary, but a doctor’s prescription for exercise “can make it feel like taking cod liver oil,” says Lieberman. “It works sometimes, but most of the time it doesn’t.” It still appears as a matter, usually linked to losing weight or avoiding disease, and “not having a heart attack in five years is not an immediate reward,” he says. Dr.. Beth Frats, Assistant Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Harvard Medical School.

Frats adds that people may not want to exercise because it was never fun. Most of us probably have memories of separating out at the gym, not picking a team, or being in a fitness center full of great people. However, she says, “Most don’t feel enthusiastic. However, training people in an empowering and stimulating way can work much better than someone’s command to exercise. Helping people experience releasing and enjoying endorphins and increasing dopamine as well as the serotonin that accompanies exercise is essential,” she says. ”

The main hurdle is that exercise tends to be filled out as an account only if it includes specific clothing, tools, trainers, or even a gym. These things can help, but they are not required, and if you are older or have no access to such things or do not have the money for such things, people can feel that exercise is not for them.

But it could be. Lieberman and Fritz say it starts with a broad definition of what can be considered exercise, and an injection of what is rarely used to describe exercise, but is certainly permissible: pleasure.

Formulate your plan

There is no single way to exercise, but these steps can help you figure out what works best for you.

Make it personal. Some people need the gym because it offers programs and limits their “exercise”, but the main component of exercise is to raise their heart rate, achieving virtually unlimited options. “It’s not a gym or running,” says Frats.

She adds that if you are confused, it is helpful to think about what you have enjoyed in the past, even as a child. That might lead you to getting a hula hoop – vigorous exercise and good laugh – but it can also make you realize that the possibilities are closer than you ever imagined. Lieberman says people never refer to dancing, playing football or walking with friends as exercise, but they can all qualify.

Start small. Time is a common excuse, and 150 minutes a week sounds like a lot. Breaking it down into 21 minutes a day makes it even less, but if you do too much too soon, you risk injury, which is another negative and discouraging sign. While you will want clearance from your primary care physician, especially if you are inactive, it is reasonable to start in five minutes, twice a day, three days a week, and slowly. “The goal is to sit less and move more,” says Frats. “Some are better than none.”

Get rid of the obstacles. Inertia is sometimes difficult to overcome because you don’t know a good walking path in your area, or you don’t have proper walking shoes. Your first “exercises” could be getting what you need, and then you won’t have to leave the house. It might be sitting on a steady ball like your office desk chair, or by using a portable pedal while sitting watching TV or reading. It’s all about forward momentum. “Start where you are ready to start,” says Frats.

Increase chatter. Lieberman says that exercising with others is essential. “We are social creatures,” he says. “It’s more fun to go to the movies with other people.” When you’re part of a group or even with someone else, there’s an implicit contract and subtle peer pressure: I’ll show up because you attend, and we can judge each other. More than that, you can talk. If it’s walking, no one really thinks about time or distance. If she dances then there is also music and you can do it via Zoom. Whatever you choose, you are more likely to stick with it. “It makes the process fun,” says Frats. “Fear is not an intrinsic motivator, but laughter, fun and love are.”


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