Your body is an amazing machine. Unlike most, which wear out with overuse…the body thrives on motion. As a matter of fact, the more you ask from it, the more it delivers and the better it feels while doing so. But on the flip side…when neglected, it will become as stiff as a rusty pipe.
Relax…I’m not going to tell you to run to the gym and workout five days a week, but I do have something to say. And I sincerely hope I have your attention…because it could be just what the doctor ordered. No charge…this one’s on me…so listen up.
I’m excited because when you know something wonderful, you want to share it with as many people as possible…especially the ones you care about. Heck, if I could transform “feeling great” into a pill, I would become a billionaire overnight…but I can’t.
Listen…there is no one, simple thing you can do that magically heals all wounds. Wait a minute…there is…well, at least 90% of them…and the following list I can personally vouch for.
- energy when tired
- clear thinking when confused
- euphoria when depressed
- peacefulness when troubled
- high self-esteem when feeling low
- motivation when feeling sluggish
- inspiration when uninspired
When we were kids, our sole responsibility in life was to have fun. And the more we ran and played, the more fun we had. Let me translate this to adult lingo. The more you gave…the more you got. It’s life’s wonderful paradox…the ingredients for feeling great!
The rules haven’t changed. You may think they have…but you would be wrong…dead wrong. The laws of energy work the same, no matter what age we are, or frame of mind we’re in.
What we have done as adults is replaced all that running and playing with responsibilities and sophistication…not to mention many diseases and illnesses which follow in lockstep as well. Sadly, we rationalize this by saying to ourselves…”it’s just part of getting older and there’s nothing we can do about it.” My question to you is this: Are you out of your @#$%&^% mind?
Welcome to week 2: Turn it up…this is the fun stuff…for feeling great is just a walk in the park.
First of all, let’s lighten up a little and tap into some of that childlike energy and excitement. Again…let me translate that into adult lingo. Let’s get motivated!
I’m going to use the backdoor approach here by first trying my best to motivate you… then I’ll show you what to do.
If you have enough discipline, you can force yourself to do anything you want or deem necessary to do. But…if you are motivated…you don’t need discipline. As a matter of fact…with enough motivation, wild horses couldn’t drag you away from what you want. Therefore, once you find your motivation…getting something done is E F F O R T L E S S…and I like effortless.
Picture yourself driving down the road alone in a car on a sunny day, when all of a sudden, a kick ass song erupts on the radio. I’m talking about one that transforms the front seat of your car into a stage and a spotlight because you know every riff as well as every lyric and you’re singing them for all you’re worth…as loud as you can. You know what I’m talking about…you’re alone and in the zone…feeling great!
You don’t know it but you are unleashing energies you can’t get anywhere else. You guessed it…music is the great motivator…no doubt about it. Your job is to exploit it to your advantage. Yes…use it to motivate…to move you off dead center…to become a little childlike. Motivate to do what…you might ask?
Here we go. Grab your iPhone or iPod and load it with your favorite music. Put your tennis shoes on and start WALKING. You heard me right…walk. Walk with your head held high and your tunes on fire. Four or five great songs will get you through a 20 to 30 minute brisk walk…and if you allow yourself to let go a little…it will be a piece of cake.
This can be done in a park…in your neighborhood…on a treadmill or stair-stepper….hell, if you have to, just walk in place. If you’re in the zone…it won’t matter where you are. Just do it! I know…it’s been used before.
Three times a week is the name of the game…four if possible. As you become proficient, you can greatly enhance its benefits by switching off jogging and walking every other minute or so. This back and forth is wonderful for your heart. Although adding jogging pays great dividends, it’s not absolutely necessary. You’ll enjoy the benefits either way.
Don’t shrug off this walking thing. If done on a regular basis, you will most definitely enjoy all of the benefits listed above and more, and here’s why. Walking…or any exercise for that matter, releases “endorphins” to the brain. And let me tell you…your brain looooves endorphins…big time. (There’s only one thing better…though just barely). In a nutshell, “endorphins” stimulate your brain and body in the same way cocaine does…without the adverse effects…and it lasts for hours beyond the workout. Again…I’ve been addicted for many years…and I’m not planning on stopping. I love feeling great!
Twenty five years ago I started my workout regimen in my home. The problem was…I had six young children interrupting me every five minutes with this and that…a recipe for defeat. I soon fixed this problem by changing my venue. I joined a gym…it works for me. So…what I’m about to tell you is absolutely essential for success.
You owe it to yourself, as well as your loved ones, to be as healthy and feel as good as you possibly can for as long as you possibly can…it affects the entire family. The good news is…this does not take any more than a half an hour or so each session to achieve…if not disturbed during the process.
Set aside a specific time for each work out. It doesn’t matter what time of day…just pick one and stick to it. Secondly, work out in a place where you have no interruptions of any kind…none…zero…zip…nada. This is your time and don’t feel guilty about it…you deserve it. Besides…it’s only a half hour or so.
Warning! If you try to just “squeeze in a work out” when you can, it will become more trouble than it’s worth, and you will stop…for sure. You need to commit!
Bonus: Couple this with the 10% rule we discussed last week…and you won’t only be shedding weight quicker and easier, but gaining that childlike energy to boot…holla! Sorry…I’ve got five daughters.
Exercise is the only thing I know where you can begin tired and finish full of energy. Yes, you heard me right. In other words…don’t let being tired keep you from getting started because you will gain energy during the workout (walking) session. Practice this for a couple of months and for this and this alone, you will become addicted…an addiction you can live with.
Bottom line: God gave us free will…something we say we would die to protect. Fine…the problem as I see it is…too many don’t understand its ramifications. It comes with a personal responsibility you know. The fact is…good things don’t just happen. You have to use this free will to make them happen…and if you don’t, they simply won’t…end of story.
The good news is…it’s never too late to hear the music. It’s all up to you…but that’s nothing new…it has always been…ever since you were a kid.
A quick word on depression: Depression is a tough bird and it affects us all from time to time. For when you’re in that moment, you feel as if you can never feel good again. But, on the other hand, when you’re in that moment of feeling fabulous, you feel as if you can never be depressed again. Many times just putting one foot in front of the other begins to bridge the gap. Only faith will get you started. And even if it doesn’t convert that day…it’s still a chance well worth taking.
Put your earphones on and turn it up…my new, favorite karaoke front-seat-in-the-spotlight song. What a fabulous hook!
Next week in phase three we’ll put the icing on the cake with a hard lean body…yes sir!