This article first appeared on Medium – a great platform for sharing your thoughts, increasing your intelligence (through reading other people’s awesome posts), and a place where you’ll find some of the most well-known entrepreneurs sharing some of their inner-most thoughts – think James Altucher and Paul Jarvis.
If you’re not on Medium yet, you’re missing out on some great content. As a writer, it’s one of the best places to just drop your own brain-fart’s and see what happens!
It’s a platform that I’m looking to write on more regularly and if you are looking to establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry, it’s definitely a place you should look to start writing on too.
Staying Fit: Why I Hate The Gym
Picture this: It’s the beginning of the week, you’ve got your schedule all figured out and you’ve set time aside to workout 3–4 times during that week. You’re not a morning person, so after a ‘normal’ workday, this is the time you find to do your exercise. But when you get home from work late three days in a row, you’re in no mood to exercise. Who wants to head to the gym and deal with all the ‘gym bunnies’ and ‘body-obsessed jocks’ when all you really want to do is take a shower, watch the latest episode of your favorite TV show and eat some delish food?
Does any of this sound at all familiar to you?
No, maybe this is more up your alley: You work from home and think you’re pretty set when it comes to work/life balance. You work when you want to and meet with friends for lunch or take trips away whenever you want. You try to exercise 4 times per week, and prefer to get it out of the way in the mornings. Yet, you find yourself still sitting at your desk come 12pm, wondering where the morning went. By this time, the rest of your day is planned out and exercise is the last thing on your mind. Do this two or three days in a row and another week has gone by where your exercise routine has fallen off the wagon…
We’re all Guilty of Pushing Aside Exercise and Healthy Eating
If any of this rings true with you, then you know that it’s easy to push aside exercise and healthy eating for more immediate gratification. Exercise doesn’t immediately reap rewards, watching my fav TV show and eating mouth-watering, buttery foods does — they make me forget out my problems and fill me with a sense of contentment. Exercise and healthy eating = pain and tasteless food.
These are some pretty massive barriers to encounter on a day to day basis in the fit to stay fit and healthy. Because I know as well as the next person, if I don’t get up off my ass and move, all this TV watching and food enjoyment can only lead to one thing — a fat butt and feeling pretty crap about myself.
I know I’m not the only one that has this experience, and the health sector is certainly a billion dollar industry, so then why am I still sitting here trying to figure out how to still eat what I want without having to step foot in a gym?
In the words of Aristotle, “We are what we repeatedly do.”
Yet why is it so damn hard to exercise and eat healthy? I’ll tell you!
How it all Started…
After 18 months working from home and working full-time as a freelancer, I had gained extra weight, I felt really lethargic and was not 100% happy with the way I looked — how could I be when nothing fit?
In short, I had an honest distaste for my body. Don’t get me wrong; I LOVED working for myself and being at home, surrounded by all my creature comforts, never having to get dressed up or leave the house if I didn’t want too.
[Tweet “And there lay part of the problem…”]
It got to a point where I loathed having to dress up to go out of the house. Mainly because nothing fit anymore, jeans were tight, tops were less than flattering (muffin top anyone?!) and coupled with not having exercised for at least 6 months, I was feeling like a big heifer (this is a young cow for those of you not familar with farm speak), with no reason to really venture out anywhere.
Something Had to Change
So I did what any sane person would do — I Googled it! Isn’t that the answer for everything we don’t know these days? Google and I have a great relationship, I ask it questions and it’s is honest and forthright with answers.
What did I Google?
[Tweet “How to lose weight WITHOUT going to the gym…”]
Because if there’s one thing I hate with an absolute pure loathing, it’s going to the gym. No matter whether it’s a male/famale or female only gym, there’s no-way that I will ever step foot in one of those institutions again… Why?
Imagine: You’re carrying a few extra pounds here and there, things are a big jiggly, but hey, your clothes still fit (albeit with a few bulges appearing here and there). You decide it’s time to start exercising again because summer is just around the corner and you love to spend time at the beach. In your current form, strutting your stuff in a bikini or any type of bathing suit sends you into a state of mass terror…
You think to yourself, “Ok, that’s it, time to get your ass off that seat and moving.” You make an appointment to visit your local gym. And yes, you have to make an appointment because they are so busy, you can no longer just drop in and chat to someone. Plus, they want time to prepare and figure out how they can hook you into as many things as possible…
You go to the gym, meet with one of those body-obsessed jocks and he goes over the facilities, the benefits of classes and how this gym provides one-on-one personal training for those that need it. He then follows all of that up with, “So, when can I book your first personal training session?”
No, you’re all signed up and ready to hit the gym, minus the personal training sessions! You look at your schedule — the gym is about a 10 minute drive from you, so it’s going to take some effort to get there in the early morning, which is when you think it will fit best with your current routine. So you set your alarm for 6am (ouch!) the next morning. Alarm goes off, you hit snooze twice and then jump out of bed at 6:30am. You suddenly remember you’re meant to be hitting the gym. Um, that’s not going to happen now, you’ve got a client call at 7:30am and then some work that is due by 11am, so going to the gym now just isn’t going to work. You reschedule it for 3:30pm…
3:3opm — Crap, you’re still in the middle of writing a witty Facebook retort to a friend’s post, so you push the gym till later, aiming for 5pm. 5pm arrives, you chuck some gear on and head to the gym, where you’re met with 50 other people all vying for the same exercise equipment. You check the class schedule and see that there is a ‘pump’ class in 10 minutes, so you decide to join that class instead of waiting for equipment to free up.
You join the class and proceed to drop your weights several times, whack someone on the bum with your bar and let a fart or two slip out while you’re doing the ‘clean and press…’
This. Was. Me.
Yep, laugh all you want, because it’s funny now, but at the time, so not funny. In fact, think mortifying and you’re half-way there.
And this is not an isolated incident! I could continue on with other, similar experiences, but I’m sure you get the gist. Fitting in exercise and going to the gym just didn’t gel well with me or my lifestyle and who in their right mind would go back to the gym after that?
All of this has led to me spending the past 6 months coming up with creative ways to avoid the gym at all costs. And as much as I’d also love to avoid exercising and healthy eating, I recognise that if I want to live to the ripe old age of 100, I’m going to need to take care of my body.
I experimented, tried different things, mixed exercises with workouts and workouts with exercises until I figured out what worked and what didn’t.
This is how I discovered a concept I like to call “No-Gym Workouts”. My mission was to find workouts that I could do at home, in the park or while I’m travelling, that would also take less than 30 minutes to complete, while giving me the most ‘bang for my buck.’
I wanted to workout hard during that set time. Because on top of hating the gym, I’m also not a fan of working out for long periods of time.
I’s got things ta do!
I researched for hours on end, experimented and perfected until I was blue in the face until I found the combinations that worked for me, both in losing weight and maintaining my ideal wight.
All this research and experimentation provided me with endless information and ideas, which I subsequently added to my Pinterest board “Let’s Get Physical” named after the popular 80's song of the same name…
I now workout 3–4 times per week, for no more than 30 minutes at a time.
In terms of eating healthy, I aim to eat well 5 days a week and give in to my cravings on the weekends. I also figured out a lot of ways to ‘hack’ my exercising and workouts so that I could spend less time sweating and more time enjoying the things that actually make me want to get up in the morning….
And so No Gym Needed: Quick & Simple Workouts for Gals on the Go. Get a Toned Body in 30 Minutes or Less was born! My first foray into the self-publishing world!
And while the odd fart still slips out, there’s no-one around to hear it - no harm, no foul…