Exercising Your Inner Child
Don’t love your workout? Maybe it’s time to find something a little more fun
Remember the halcyon days of your childhood, before burning calories was part of an “exercise program?” Maybe you have kids of your own now, but you’d probably be hard-pressed to organize their activity into a program of any kind. Kids are so full of energy that they usually don’t need to be told to exercise (unless mesmerized by one of many modern technological distractions). Take a trip to the mall or the supermarket and you may observe one sympathy-inducing fact: many parents can’t get their kids to stop running around, even if they try.
What’s their secret? Do we develop some genetic trait as we get older that prevents us from having any fun with physical activity?
The answer is far simpler: everything is new and exciting to kids. Though this may be becoming less true of today’s children, kids can find fun in just about anything outside and will do so until they’re so tired that they have to be carried home by mom or dad.
How does this apply to your own exercise “program” after surgery for weight loss? If workouts are starting to feel like a chore, or have long felt that way, motivating yourself to exercise can be a troublesome task. Trying to force yourself to do something you don’t want to do will often result in you not doing it. Instead, take a cue from the little ones and explore something new and exciting—a fun form of exercise that ultimately doesn’t seem like exercise at all.
If you think you’ve tried everything, guess again. There are countless forms of exercise out there—you just need to find one you like enough to keep you coming back week after week. Who knows what activity will unleash your inner child? Here are two to try out.
If you were like most kids, the thrill of bouncing on a trampoline like a kangaroo on the moon never got old. If you’re like most adults, that thrill still hasn’t faded. Try a more grown up approach to the trampoline in one of the many trampoline fitness classes that have popped up around the country. These typically have participants mixing the fun of trampoline bouncing with dance moves and other cardio activities, sometimes even incorporating other childhood favorites like the hula hoop. One of the biggest benefits of working out on a trampoline, particularly for weight surgery patients, is that it takes pressure off the joints and knees.
Take a trip to any swimming pool this summer and check out how much fun the kids are having just splashing around in the water. Sure, you might not be able to emulate their sheer aquatic ecstasy, but there are still tons of ways for adults to have just as much fun in the water. If you’ve never tried it, give kayaking a shot. This great calorie-burning watersport will get you out in the great outdoors and help you tone your muscles and core alike. What’s more, there are few better places than the North Miami area to do it—Florida’s many waterways and beaches offer ample opportunities for kayakers of any skill level.
Discovering your ideal workout may take some time and exploration, but the right one can make you feel as giddy as a kid at Disney World. If neither of these two activities sound like they’ll be enough to awaken your inner child, try to think of something you’ve always wanted to learn or try. Have you dreamed of being a dancer? Try taking a ballroom dancing class. Have you always heard about the relaxing workout offered by hitting the links? Give golf a try. With so many options out there you have no excuse to languish with a workout you don’t love.