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Post your tips to get motivated to exercise

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neilcreek is a group administrator neilcreek says:

I hate exercising. If I can avoid it I will. But recently I've been finding it harder to concentrate, and I get tired quicker and find myself becoming physically limited when out shooting photos - I noticed this especially when shooting last weekend with a group of young (18avg) people (I'm 33).

I'm always hearing how exercise not only helps your body, but also clears the mind, helps you focus and all sorts of other good mental stuff. I believe it, but it's STILL hard to motivate myself to get off my butt and even walk around the block. It's just so DULL! And I always feel tired afterwards.

So how do I get over this bump, get motivated to start and keep exercising, so I can start to enjoy all the benefits, and maybe one day even enjoy exercising?

Please excuse the self-pitying nature of this post, but the winter blues are starting to sink in...
8:15AM, 6 July 2008 PDT (permalink)

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-ytf- says:

There's no way I could get motivated to do a regular exercise routine. I need interest. Going to a gym is too expensive and way boring. I walk. In fact, I walk alot. I walk hard, fast and for rather long distances. I incorporate photography into my walks. I plot a loose route and take it from there. A shortie is about 3 miles. My average walkabout is 4 to 5. On days when I just don't have alot of time, I try to leave for work early and walk part way. Often, after work I'll take extra time and walk before heading home. What makes this easy for me is that I live in an urban area where a car is a waste of time and gas, and I have been in the habit most of my life. I walk circles around the 18yr old group: I turn 50 this year.
ages ago (permalink)

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Chrissy Downunder says:

lol Neil .. I had this very same problem not so long ago too. Just couldn't get my butt out of my chair which often resulted in sore aching muscles in my neck (I call it pc neck syndrome) and I also developed a nasty little knot at the top of my right shoulder which is my mouse moving arm. Do you get that problem?

I should have known better though :o .......being a massage therapist for 15 yrs (in my last life) I was always advising my clients to take regular breaks with short bursts of exercise. It help to rejuvenate both the body and mind, promotes and maintains muscle and joint flexibility too.

Anyhow .. 3 weeks ago Peter and myself got a 12 month old Maltese x Shitzu (Buddy), he is so energetic and was constantly wanting my attention while I worked at my pc for many hours, so I started taking him around the block (20 min walk with hills) a few times a day so that he could burn some of his pent up energy and be more content to sit at my feet while I work.

I have found now that he like a little alarm clock. Every 3 hours we go for a walk and I've noticed my muscles and joints are much looser and my head much clearer when we get back home. Other benefits I have noticed have been I'm getting to know all the locals on our route .. Especially the ones walking their doggies, I also take my camera with me .. You just never know what's around the next corner ;)

I'm not suggesting you get a dog as I realise you live in an apartment, but you could always set a small clock up next to your pc to take a break every 2 or 3 hours, or do like I do and have my outlook calendar display a reminder every 3 hrs. Push yourself for a few weeks and I'm sure you'll find yourself feeling much better and like me look forward to exercise breaks.

Here is some more information others may benefit from.

A few interesting facts:

The brain chemical serotonin:

Serotonin is an important brain chemical (neurotransmitter) that contributes to a range of functions, including sleep and wake cycles, libido, appetite and mood. Serotonin has been linked to depression.

Some researchers have found that regular exercise, and the increase in physical fitness that results, alters serotonin levels in the brain and leads to improved mood and feelings of wellbeing. Some research indicates that regular exercise boosts body temperature, which may ease depression by influencing the brain chemicals.

Other therapeutic benefits of exercise:

Apart from changes in brain chemistry, there are other factors that may help explain the benefits of exercise:

• The person experiences a boost to their self-esteem because they take an active role in their own recovery.

• Some forms of exercise, such as team sports, are also social events.

• Physical activity burns up stress chemicals, like adrenaline, which promotes a more relaxed state of mind.

• An enjoyable bout of exercise may be distracting enough to break the vicious cycle of pessimistic thinking.

The physical benefits of regular exercise include:

• Improved cardiovascular fitness
• Reduced risk of premature death
• Reduced cholesterol level
• Reduced blood pressure
• Maintenance of healthy weight
• Improved muscle tone.


PHYSICAL ACTIVITY - OVERCOMING THE BARRIERS:
www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/P...

I hope this helps ..... Have fun walking or with whatever you choose to do! ☺

PS: No excuses now .. At 33 you are just a young whipper snapper compared to me at nearly 48 :o
Originally posted ages ago. (permalink)
Chrissy Downunder edited this topic ages ago.

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Sierra Koch says:

I have the same damned problem! lol...with the same problem--its friggin boring. So I decided for me I'm going to learn a Para Para routine :) A simple one >__< I epically failed at getting good with DDR.
hopefully the link works lol...
www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iIwJdQDcSA


btw..the dude in the middle is kinda disturbing...
Originally posted ages ago. (permalink)
Sierra Koch edited this topic ages ago.

gigantic rock [deleted] says:

lol. My friend set up a computer connected to the TV, and configured Dance Dance Revolution to work with a mat he bought off ebay. It didn't last long but it was funny watching him!

Me? I got fat from lack of exercise, then had to stop eating wheat for medical reasons, dropped 20kg down to 91kg and then got motivated to exercise now as I still had pants in the cupboard that were slightly too small. Fitting in to those pants is all the motivation I need!

Not much help right? Another method I used was to reward myself a couple of times a week after my workout by going to McDonalds for a skim coffee with my mate afterwards.
ages ago (permalink)

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Sierra Koch says:

lol another thing...put on some really awesome fast/hyper/techno whatever music and dance your heart out!! Its really fun, lol especially when no one is around to make fun of you >_< or if you like giving a good show do it in public I guess lol.
ages ago (permalink)

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Chrissy Downunder says:

Oh yes .. definately Sierra .. dancing is the most fun way to exercise!. I'm often turning the music up and hopping outta my chair to dance. If Peters around he usually ends up joining me. Lately our new doggie woggie has joined in as well and isn't too bad on his two back feet .. lol .. I'm going to teach him to be a dancing dog soon. You just have to check out the videos on YouTube.
ages ago (permalink)

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ASTIA says:

Hello All!
Since i am fairly new to photography, What i do is go for "active/fast" walks. My motivation: i take a different route everyday and i bring along a p&s camera .........sometimes something comes up or sometimes i find a spot that might be interesting to go back to the following day to continue learning photography.

works for now!

ipod helps too
ages ago (permalink)

pricey place [deleted] says:

Get a dog - mine gets me out in all weathers, and trying out new routes - with the camera!
Originally posted ages ago. (permalink)
pricey place edited this topic ages ago.

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dallascowboys2007 says:

Buy a Wii ?
ages ago (permalink)

strong trade [deleted] says:

one good motivation is trying on a swimsuit in one of those department store changing rooms. i work out because i need to. it boosts your mood and energy and being a woman, i do it so i don't wind up wearing strtch pants and looking ten years older than i am. i like to walk and jog with my ipod shuffle, some good music can get you moving. it is also quiet time since i have a 9 year old daughter and i am over 40. i also use some free weights twice a week because building muscle increases you metabolism. like i said i need to keep up with these kids and i do pretty good at it!
good luck finding your motivation!
ages ago (permalink)

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peanut_gallery says:

I think its all about finding what you enjoy the most or dislike the least to get amount of exercise you wish and be able to stick with it.

For me, I'm a water dog. I end up swimming at least 3-4 times a week for usually no less then an hour. I don't swim laps or anything just casually swim around in deep enough water so I can barely touch the bottom or I'm body surfing in the waves. Granted I live in Hawaii and the water temp stays pretty much the same all year, but when I lived the the cold mainland states, I'd go to an indoor pool when the weather got chilly.

Some people are runners, some are walkers, and others have their own thing going but their all doing what they enjoy. Personally I don't like running and walking can get a little boring after awhile unless you keep taking different routes but both are a great way to see the neighborhood and meet some people.

Once you find what you enjoy, it gets a lot easier to stick with it than if your doing something just to do it. Just give it a little time and you'll find something that works for you.
ages ago (permalink)

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neilcreek is a group administrator neilcreek says:

Just went for a short (700m) walk in the brisk afternoon, and I feel alright afterwards. Just a little tired in the legs. Still a little scatter-brained, but I know it'll take a while for me to notice real improvements.

One positive benefit that I wasn't expecting though: it's hard rubish collection week at the moment, so there's all kinds of junk on the side of the road. Well I happened to find a bunch of large black tiles, something I've been looking for to use as a surface for small still life photography. It's got speckles though, and I would have prefered plain black, but it's worth a try, and it was free :)
ages ago (permalink)

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shutterbug_rn says:

Having an i-pod really helps. Put on something with a good beat, turn it up, and get moving! (I need to listen to my own advice--at this point, I'm just making monthly donations to the gym!)
ages ago (permalink)

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neilcreek is a group administrator neilcreek says:

I'm actually going to start researching an mp3 player soon (need a cheapy tho, so not sure about ipod), because I think walking will be a great opportunity to listen to some photography podcasts, such as Photo Net Cast, which is made by some of my good online photo buddies :)
ages ago (permalink)

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shutterbug_rn says:

Hmm, that's an interesting idea. Podcasts for exercising...but do they have a beat you can move to? ;) I kid, I kid! Really though, it always helps distract me from what I'm doing. (On the treadmill, of course. Might be dangerous if one were running along the side of a road...) Try it!
ages ago (permalink)

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Marvindek says:

Intresting topic, I'm a semi-pro basketballer myself and i exercise almost every day (fitness, basketball, cardio).
The thing that keeps me going is the progression I make every time. In a way it's quite a lot like photography, you learn a bit every time you go out to shoot some photo's.
So try to set some goals like beating a certain time/distance while walking or loosing some weight or gaining some muscles, that is whats keeping me motivated anyway.
Originally posted ages ago. (permalink)
Marvindek edited this topic ages ago.

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Mandy73 - The Photographer Blog says:

I agree with The Wolf Brigade, trying clothes on that used to fit and don't anymore is all the motivation I need to get myself moving. I like to watch what I eat but I don't want to go on a diet, so I've started some exercise. Mainly walking everywhere (saves on petrol) and doing an old keep fit video I found (you'd think I was going to die at the end if you saw me).

It's amazing how much it's helped in a week, but as always it's the consistency part that is hard...
ages ago (permalink)

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A. Marques says:

Hey Neil, thanks for the plug on PhotoNetCast.

Personally, my mp3 player goes with me everywhere, fully loaded with nice music, audiobooks or podcasts (specially podcasts). It's a great way to keep me busy on the gym or just when I go for a jog.
ages ago (permalink)

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Chrissy Downunder says:

There's quite a few good suggestions and alternatives on exercise I have been catching up with on this post, so thought I'd leave my last ramblings for the night here.

@ NEIL: 700m is good. After 20 minutes of moderate excersice those 'feel good' chemicals in the brain and body kick in. They can become addictive too :) Hope you are getting lots out of this post. I know I am!

@ ASTIA: Hi and welcome to what seems to be the mad mad world of photography :)
It appears most, like yourself are suggesting ipod 'thingamajigs' (I'm still in walkman mode and haven't caught up yet .. lol).

YES! music while walking to a catchy beat is most uplifting and seems to make it all that much easier too.

@ RURAL LIGHT : I totally agree. A dog will do the trick for sure, they are so persistant sometimes come rain hail or shine.

@ DALLASCOUBOYS: What the .. ? More information please :D

@ WIKKED ONE: Oh boy .. trying on swimsuits can certainly be a calorie burner. Have you ever tried on a full body latex outfit .. guaranteed to be a challenge in any small cubicle in a change room :) .. I know b/c I've been there and it takes just as much time and effort to get it off too. Also, they all usually come in only one size fits all (lol) .. not good if you've had a hardy food filled winter season but very good for the ultimate workout.

@ PEANUT GALLERY: Swimming is actually ranked top of this list as one of the best and most beneficial forms of physical exercise and activity one can do. You use every muscle in your body while swimming and there is no weight bearing on the joints. Taking one of those aqua aerobics classes at a local pool was going to be my next food for thought suggestions. It certainly is a much more intense workout than one would expect.

@ SHUTTERBUG: lol .. I too have donated massive amounts to previously joined gyms. The last gym I joined and paid up for ,but didn't end up using I managed to get reimbursed for a large percentage of the joining fee ( a few hundred $) .. as I had obtained a letter from my doc stating that at the time I was unable to attend due to pending ops on my knees, (all true), but I ponder on how much money I have wasted over the years when I had no excuse :o
Why is it that when we pay for something like that and end up not utilising our monies worth I'll never know ? A treadmill is good :)

@ REVENGA: Muscles are great! I'm into them .. literally! .. heavier than fat on ones body .. but still very good for tone and lookin good ☺

@ MANDY: Diets in my opinion are definitely not the way to go I have found over the years and also witnessed. So glad to hear you aren't doing one of those. Permanent lifestyle changes combined with reg exercise seem to be the best way to manage one's weight, muscle tone and fitness. The progression and transformation should be taken one step at a time though so as not to put one's body in shock, lol

@ A MARQUES: I'm heading over to PhotoNetCast now to try and get the lowdown on podcasts etc.

Ok .. that's me for the night .. Cheers all :)
Originally posted ages ago. (permalink)
Chrissy Downunder edited this topic ages ago.

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ljphoto22 says:

I generally have the same issue, but my biggest problem is finding the time to workout. I work 9 hour days, M-F, and have a 10 month old, so my evenings are filled with baby time, dinner, baths, etc. The only times I do have to work out are on the weekends, but those are my days off from the craziness of the week, I'd rather rest than run.

I really should be motivated by my husband. Since February he's lost over 50lbs through a healthy diet and weight lifting. There's a before and after pic on my family blog, He goes every day after work to lift weights. Unfortunately, I'm the one who has to relieve the childcare and come straight home. But he did tell me something that makes sense, if you can't take care of yourself, how can you take care of your child. I'm not saying you should have a child, but I've never seen him so motivated in the whole time we've known each other. He even quit smoking this time last year because we were having a child.
ages ago (permalink)

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focuss06 says:

Hi all.
It seems that this is very old topic but I just joined and I'd like to add my opinion. I've been studying IT for four years now. And I'm literally attached to my computer all the time. Recently, my professor gave us the task to go out and shoot whatever we wanted. That's when I found out I really like photography.

Now for the exercise. I rarely use city transportation, except for very long distances (20 or more minutes with the bus). I walk all the time. I walk since my bike broke when I was in high school, minimum 10 km per day.

I don't have MP3 player or such, but I like to hear what people are talking when I walk by them. I had a thoughts of recording that parts of conversations and make some kind of short movie or something like that. lol

Also, I use elevators only, and only when I carry some very heavy bags to apartment. I like to walk up and down the stairs. It's an exellent exercise. I recommend it to all. :)

Cheers
JD
ages ago (permalink)

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Anne Keckler says:

Hey, Neil. I cover this a bit in my blog: www.annekeckler.com

Sometimes, I just have to make myself do it. Setting up a regular routine helps. If it's Tuesday morning, I know I'm going to the gym.

Prepare the night before so you have no excuses. If your exercise plan includes walking each morning, then be sure you lay out appropriate clothing the night before, fill a water bottle to take with you, etc. Make it almost easier to exercise than to not exercise!

Don't turn on your computer in the morning until after you've done something active. Once you do sit down to the computer, be sure to get up for ten minutes at least every hour. Walk around the block or do 50 jumping jacks or jump rope or do some pushups. Just do something! Ten minutes isn't the hard part; the hard part is getting up from that computer! ;-)

Find ways to sneak in physical activity, such as parking on the far side of the parking lot, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking anywhere that is within one mile of your house, biking anywhere within three miles of your house, etc.

Think of things you enjoy doing. Do you like to swim, dance, walk, bike, or what? I'd suggest you add some resistance exercise (weightlifting) to the mix, to help prevent muscle loss as you age.

Having someone else to do it with helps me, too. It makes me accountable if someone is counting on me to exercise with them.
ages ago (permalink)

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Anne Keckler says:

@CHRISSY_DOWNUNDER

Regarding swimming: Swimming is great cardiovascular exercise, but weight-bearing exercises are important to maintain bone density, unless you have a specific physical ailment which makes this detrimental to you.

Neil, to answer your question about what personally motivates me:

My biggest motivation is that I don't want to get old before my time. Most of my family has diabetes and heart problems due to being extremely overweight. My mom, however, is so healthy that at 76 she is on no medications and the doctors can find absolutely nothing wrong with her! The difference between her and the rest of her entire family is that she has always watched her weight (portion control!) and exercised. While her sisters have ended up needing extensive care from others, my mom is still independent and healthy. I'm convinced it's due to her lifestyle!
ages ago (permalink)

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tuxcomputers says:

Neil, I had the same issue, several things came together that got me out of my chair:
1. I went camping for a week over Christmas, it was hot and we didn't eat much, I came back a belt hole smaller.
2. I got myself a free MP3 player using my QANTAS frequent flyer points.
3. I downloaded the Album "Feed the animals" from the mashup artist "Girl Talk". It is a download only pay what you want album, I paid $5 and now feel guilty because I have benefited so much.

I have lost 7kg so far and am starting to do weight sessions.
ages ago (permalink)

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Seven_Seas_Photography says:

You have some great answers there Neil, no excuses now huh!?!

I walk most mornings because

a) the dog won't forgive me if I don't
b) it really does make me feel better
c) I love listening to my iPod
d) it's MY time - we all need some!
e) my cholesterol, blood pressure, etc are all good because of it

so here's my tip - get up a bit earlier, throw on your oldest, most comfortable clothes and a hat and just GO - before you wake up properly and change your mind!

iPod makes all the difference!!! you can even listen to photography podcasts :-)
ages ago (permalink)

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JBeickert says:

Take a photo of yourself (no photoshop!) every week or month to track your progress and motivate yourself at the same time.
ages ago (permalink)

kind stone [deleted] says:

i exercise everyday i work my butt off in a labour intensive job that i hate
ages ago (permalink)

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