KICK UP YOUR FITNESS WITH A BIT OF FUN

by Angie Fenton | Illustration by Adam Kleinert

 

YOU KNOW THE OLD ADAGE, “If you love what you do it’ll never feel like work?” I recently tried revising that a bit to pertain to getting fit and have finally found the key to success, at least for me. I’ve lost 35 pounds (and counting) in the six months since giving birth to my daughter by changing up my eating habits, which is a major part of my weight loss, but I’ve also incorporated (mostly) fun ways to workout.

Sure, that means doing things like performing silly dance numbers for my baby girl (so fun), pushing her stroller up and down our mountain of a driveway (not so fun but so worth it) and training with my husband at the YMCA (usually fun). But I’ve found the obvious to be true: If you can find ways to make getting fit more enjoyable, you’re more likely to stick to it and see real results.

“Have fun when you workout and it won’t feel like work,” says Jeff Miller, owner of VO2 Multisport. “Want to realize how out of shape you are? Then, play a game of tag with your kids. Want to get in shape? Then, start playing 20 minutes of tag with your kids every day for two weeks. They will enjoy the time together, you’ll all get some cardio and, eventually, you will get to say, ‘Tag, you’re it.’ ”

Here are a few other ways to get fit while having fun (mostly).

TRY ONE OF THOSE VIDEOS YOU SEE ON FACEBOOK. You know, the ones that tout things like, “19 Bodyweight Exercises You Can Do Literally Anywhere,” “Tone Your booty in this 10-min. butt workout” or “We’re Live with Blah Blah who is teaching you how to workout at your desk.” I used to get annoyed when they would pop up on my timeline, until something compelled me to finally watch one that caught my eye because it was short and seemed sim do. So I did And now I purposely search the social network for workout videos as well as ones that show easy but tasty healthy eats.

GO SHOPPING AT YOUR LOCAL FARMERS MARKET. Make a morning or evening of it, depending where you go. Almost every week, I meet one of my dearest friends at the market for coffee, conversation and a stroll past dozens of booths featuring the freshest vegetables, fruits, locally-sourced proteins and so much more. Not only do we get a bit of exercise – especially if we go for a speed walk before maneuvering through the market– but it’s changed the way I shop and plan meals. Since local farmers only bring what’s in season, I’ll shop what they have and often get advice on how they prefer to prepare their products, which is usually simple and healthy. I’m pretty sure the gold and red beets I recently prepared (tops and all) with a drizzle of Garlic Jalepeño Extra Virgin Olive Oil from The Olivet (37 Bank St. in The Underground Station in New Albany) and a dash of salt and cracked black pepper are now among my husband’s favorite dishes. Buy what’s fresh and keep it simple.

GET OFF YOUR PHONE AND OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE – and go for a walk or run in a new location every day for a week. While you’re at it, if you have an unruly dog or two, vow to take him/them with you. Not only is a tired dog is a good dog (trust me on this), but regular jaunts with your furry best friend can help hold you accountable. Oh, and feel free to take your phone out once or twice on your travels to take a selfie with your canine sidekick. It’s a fun way to measure your progress.

GET YOUR PHONE OUT AND PLAY POKÉMON GO. There, I said it. Don’t knock it until you try it. Just make sure to look up every now and then. There’s a whole world out there.

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