No doubt, getting more exercise is a wonderful New Year’s resolution, but there is a disconnect: according to the CDC, barely 1 in 5 Americans gets the recommended amount of physical activity. One expert researcher claims that it’s because our motivation to exercise isn’t strong enough, and she has the evidence to back up her claim.
Dr. Michelle Segar, head of the University of Michigan’s Sport, Health, and Activity Research and Policy Center, wants to shift how people think about exercise. And Dr. Segar, who has twenty years of study experience, believes that changing our reasons for exercising will affect our exercise habits.
Does it appear to be overly simple? Let’s have a look at the exercise mental framework. What motivates you to exercise? Weight loss and improved health are two common reasons for exercising.
In fact, according to one of Dr. Segar’s research, the majority of participants cited weight loss or health enhancement as their primary incentive for exercising. What’s the real kicker? People who identified weight loss or health promotion as their purpose for physical activity actually exercised the least, according to the study!
“You’d think that losing weight or improving our overall health would be enough to keep us going to the gym, but evidence reveals that it isn’t the case. It’s possible that the rewards aren’t immediate enough to keep us motivated.”
Dr. Segar wants to shift the focus away from weight loss and improved health and instead focus on simply feeling better. The benefits of exercise are viewed as an abstract concept to be realized in the future when the focus is on weight loss and better health. Dr. Segar feels that focusing on how you feel makes the advantages of exercise more apparent right away.
In an interview, she stated that immediate incentives that improve daily life—more energy, a better mood, less stress, and more opportunities to connect with friends and family—offer significantly greater motivation.
After all, our modern culture is based on rapid pleasure, which could be a contributing factor to weight and inactivity. So remember this sentence as you set a new workout goal: “I exercise to feel better.”
You can admit that a healthy weight and a healthy physique are possible side benefits of exercise, but your primary aim should be to feel better. Immediate benefits of “feeling better” include greater happiness, less stress, increased energy, fewer depressive symptoms, and a boost in self-esteem. So keep in mind that exercise has immediate advantages, even if weight loss is further down the line.
This article has discussed all the facts to motive you for daily exercise. Keep yourself active and fit by making a workout routine. We will soon meet again with a new article. Time for me to leave. Goodbye!