We may have some experiences or injuries that you have sustained from a certain activity that made us give up our favourite exercise or sports. Bad experiences should not be a deterrent to us towards leading a more healthy lifestyle. If fact, once we work on the fear and overcome it, it will not longer be a fear and we would feel more confident when we battle future challenges.
Let’s take for instance Mariah Carey. She almost drowned when she was six while swimming in the ocean and yet swimming is still her favourite form of exercise:
Swimming is my favorite form of exercise, which is surprising since I almost drowned in the ocean when I was 6. It was scary, but it didn’t traumatize me or deter me from going in again. My mother just put me back in the water and told me it would be fine. And it was.
For professional althletes, injuries are often sustained due to the demands of their training and the intensity of the exercises required. However, it is not a deterrent for them to give up the sports altogether. With physiotherapy, they focus on rehabilating their injuries and then get back on the game again.
Years ago, a friend of mine literally swore off yoga after having a slipped disk by doing the yoga post. She was overweight during that time and in that her haste to try to lose weight asap, she may have tried too hard at her back bends. When her core was not strong enough to counter the pressure, she ended up injuring her back.
We would need to motivate ourselves to go back to exercise again after healing our injury. If one had experienced an experience of almost drowning, one would often be afraid of the water. But in the case of Mariah Carey, she learned and get well acquited with swimming and use it as a workout to help her lose weight. By learning to face our fears, we become stronger each time not only physically but mentally and emotionally.
For those of you who may have been very active and fit during your school days but now finding yourself gaining weight and feeling like you have an enormous task in front of you to do, don’t lose heart. Don’t tell yourself you can’t do it, or fear that others may laugh at you at the gym. Just do it- step by step.
Start by setting a target for yourself- a more managable target- perhaps twice a week to the gym with a proper cardio class. If you prefer to exercise by the cardio machines, then set some target calories to burn before allowing yourself to stop. Don’t start with over high expectation. Also, watch what you eat to make sure you are not putting in more calories (sometimes we tend to eat more when they go to the gym- due to ‘miscalculation’, they burn 300 calories but after that put in 600 calories causing weight gain).
Bit by bit- aim for health, for a better feeling of well-being. Then sooner when you start seeing results, your fitness levels would have improve and you can then go for higher intensity. The ongoing results would continue to motivate you. The very least, you would end up feeling fitter, more active and less tired.
Don’t fear exercising. Don’t give up. Don’t care about what other people think about you. Just go and exercise for yourself.