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Four Emotions To Motivate Your Midlife Exercise Routine

Motivate midlife exercise routine

Midlife Fitness: Lesley McShane

March 19th is the first day of spring this year.

It is the date we feel safe enough to poke our heads from under the covers and begin to resume an active life. Winter is usually so gray and cold that we fight to get our workouts in, especially after Christmas, through January, into early February.

The idea of spring and the promise of warmer weather, sun, and longer days gets our minds moving toward becoming active again. But getting into the habit of working out or breaking the habit of not working out is easier said than done.

4 Emotions To Motivate Your Exercise Routine:

We all know we should be working out four to five days a week for at least 30 minutes, but we don’t because all the rational reasons fall short in the motivation department. But emotion helps us break through the resistance to take the first step.

“Winter is usually so gray and cold that we fight to get our workouts in, especially after Christmas, through January, into early February.”

Everything we do is driven by emotion. Everything is associated with how you feel or how it makes you feel. For example, I eat a lot of sugar because I’m sad or lonely. Or, I drink alcohol because it relaxes me and takes my mind off problems. And, I don’t go to the gym because I am embarrassed about the 20 pounds I’ve put on.

When trying to motivate our midlife exercise routine this spring, let’s examine four emotions or feelings we can employ to help us take the first step.

1. The Emotion Of Limitation:

When we’re not moving our bodies and spending a lot of time in a sedentary position, we don’t feel good and are limited in what we can do. There is something about wanting to stand up from a seated position, but can’t without effort. Or, needing to carry your groceries from the car, but can’t lift them. Or, wanting to get down on the ground to play with your grandkids or do some gardening, but have trouble getting down, let alone back up.

These feelings of limitation are real and can hit you before you know it. One day you can, the next you can’t. And if you aren’t using your body now, you are losing it for later. The promise of being able to move is a very powerful motivator.

2. The Emotion Of Knowing You Look Good:

Another facet of feeling good doesn’t have anything to do with our physical ability. It’s about looking good and the thoughts we have about ourselves. Remember that line from the movie Trading Places where the two older stock traders exchange “Looking good Randall”, “Feeling good Mortimer”? When you look good, you are much more likely to feel good overall. That is a fantastic way to motivate our midlife exercise routine.

Looking good is subjective for each of us. You know how you want to look and must meet that requirement yourself. Does it involve losing some visceral fat, aka your midlife middle? Then that is what you have to tackle through fitness and nutrition. Does it involve getting rid of the black circles under your eyes? Then focus on what it will take to get more sleep, rest, and relaxation each day. And so on.

If you are taking care of yourself, there is something about seeing that person in the mirror and recognizing that they are doing everything necessary for self-love. The eyes are brighter, and the skin glows.

“It is up to us to show others how we want to be treated, by treating ourselves well.”

3. The Emotion Of Realization:

There is always that time we finally realize that this life is all we get and that time is ticking by no matter what. We still have many years to live (hopefully), so we have to decide how we want to live all of them. Do we want to live it as a frail, aging lady or a vibrant, strong woman?

We get to choose. Human nature dictates that we want others to treat us as independent and strong. It is up to us to show others how we want to be treated, by treating ourselves well. Treat yourself as a frail aging woman, and that’s what you’ll become. Push yourself to be a strong woman, and you will be.

The Emotion Of Knowing We Deserve To Feel Good About Ourselves:

Every woman deserves every wonderful thing that life offers, but that starts with us. How we treat ourselves is the blueprint for how all others treat us. When we treat our bodies like the temples they are and speak to ourselves the way we want others to speak to us, we build an amazing amount of confidence that spreads through our entire body.

When we know we deserve it, we’ll do it. You deserve to be strong, so get it. You deserve to finish that 5K, so do it. You deserve to look the way you want, so put a plan into place to get there. All acts of self-love are good. There is no downside. Try these small but significant changes to your perspective and let’s motivate our midlife exercise routine, starting today.

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About the Author:

Lesley McShane is an advocate for all things midlife health and wellness. She is a podcaster, writer, author, and ACSM certified personal trainer who is fully committed to encouraging middle-aged women to prioritize their fitness and nutrition NOW to feel better and live happier, longer. She hosts the top 1.5% globally ranked podcast Redesigning Midlife where she and her guests talk about embracing the empowerment of midlife with the realization that it is never too late to feel amazing. Her mission is to help women discover that everything they need to create an epic and healthy second half of life already lives inside them.

Lesley enjoys cycling, music, being with family and friends, IPAs, the NFL, her doggies, motivating people, and generally being curious about life. You can visit her website at www.lesleylmcshane.com.