I’ve got a not-so-secret secret … my workouts are sometimes not all they’re cracked up to be. You know those days — you’ve got good intentions, but you’re tired, or hungry, or cranky, or mad, or lazy. Or maybe you’re pretty content but just NOT feeling the fitness thing. It happens. We’re not workout robots.
So how do I know when it’s just not gonna happen? It’s usually when I find myself sinking — very happily, I might add — into one of my fitness guilty pleasures:
Guilty Pleasure #1
Putting on gym clothes on a Sunday morning, yet not ever actually going to the gym, but instead puttering around the house all day, ultimately finding myself still wearing said outfit while cooking dinner. Then, after dinner, half-heartedly doing a few stretches on the carpet while snuggling with my dog.
Guilty Pleasure #2
Getting all set up to do yoga at home via online class, but instead just lying on the mat in pigeon prep watching the teacher do cool poses rather than actually doing the class (except for savasana, of course).
Guilty Pleasure #3
Running on the treadmill and despairing that every step is just. so. hard. So I relent and turn the speed down to — oh, about a 3 mph leisurely stroll — while catching up on Downton Abbey on my iPad.
Guilty Pleasure #4
Rushing to a Soul Cycle, or Barry’s, or fill-in-the-blank tough, guaranteed to turn you to sweaty mush studio class, getting stuck in traffic, realizing I won’t make it, rationalizing that I need a day off anyway, and going shopping instead with the money I’ve “saved.”
Guilty Pleasure #5
And, a new one I’ve discovered since moving to a ski town: After a few days of hiking and skiing steep, narrow, thigh-burning terrain, being secretly happy when the tougher stuff closes for a day, giving me an excuse to sit back, relax and cruise through moderate powder fields without getting FOMO.
I used to beat myself up when I wasn’t super motivated about my workout, but now I realize the importance of listening to my body (and sometimes — my mind). I want to be fit for health reasons, but more importantly, I want to enjoy it. Most of the time, if I’m not feeling it, I give myself a little push and I end up having a great workout. But sometimes, even a big shove isn’t enough, and forcing it only leads to feeling worse. When that happens, I shrug my shoulders, give myself a pass, and enjoy doing whatever else I need more. Because tomorrow’s workout (and mental outlook) will be better for it.