Friday, 30 May 2014
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Change your perspective and your expectations.
Take a minute to consider what your relationship to exercise is founded on.
Why are you in this relationship to begin with? Your weight? Long-term health benefits? Beacause you have to exercise (everyone else is doing it)? Does the doctor (or your mother) say you should? Scrap that.
As with all relationships, the clue to real love (getting to the point where you “miss” it when you are not together), is enjoying spending time together. You need to learn to enjoy movement for movement’s sake, for the pure joy of feeling your body moving.
Stop thinking about what it could do for you long term: What does it do for you now?
Do you feel happy after moving your body? Limber & looser? Freer? More powerful? Does it clear your mind and your worries for a while? Is the world a better place after spending some time with your moving body?
If all you focus on is the long-term benefits, and you can’t see what it is already doing for you today, you will take all the joy out of your relationship. Start living your relationship in the present. Go back to why you like to move, not what it can give you long term.
Stop thinking so much about what It should be giving You: What can You give It?
As with all relationships the best you can give your partner is your full attention. Learn to read your moving-body’s nuances of tone, its changes in inflexion. Delight in the sheer pleasure of your body pounding, shaking, jumping the stress and tension out of your mind, body and soul. You can both then bask in the post-workout glow.
5 ways to apply this advice right away
1. List the reasons why you DO love to move. Refer to it often.
It’s good to remind yourself what it’s REALLY all about, for those times when going gets rough.
2. List the forms of movement that you DO love to engage in.
When going gets rough, there has to be a foundation of love to fall back on. Do not expect to love your workout routine tomorrow if you never loved it to begin with (or worse, if you hate it). Find yourself an activity you really enjoy doing and stick to that for now.
3. Start learning some basic body mapping. Apply it during your workouts.
You can try being aware of your feet, or your armpits, or your neck, during movement. The point is to start really connecting to your moving body, to learn to be present in the moment and in the movement. All true joy springs from this fountain.
4. Start researching possible places where you can go on workout dates.
Decide if you want to have some alone time on your date (perhaps a leisurely walk or run along the beach or a country trail… you can take the dog too), or you’d rather party with friends (a dance class, a pilates class, a yoga class, a functional fitness class, a tennis match… so many options, you can pick your party-style).
5. If your relationship is in real tatters, get some professional help.
A good teacher or coach can make all the difference if you find yourself hating your time together with your body during your workouts. What you need is to learn each other’s language. Only then will you each be able to communicate more clearly your needs and delights. An Alexander Technique teacher can help you get back in touch with what your body is feeling, with how to communicate clear directions to it, and how to grow together towards your true potential.
Let me know how it goes in the comments.
See you next week.
If you’d like to know more about how to get your relationship with your moving body back in shape, check out what my work is about or contact me.
- ▼ May (5)
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