Here at the Fit Teacher Project, we’re always encouraging our clients to eat as many whole, unprocessed foods as possible.
It’s obvious who wins in a whole vs. processed debate but I want to talk about whole vs. processed fitness.
Go ahead, type the word “exercise” into a google search. TELL me it’s not easy to get overwhelmed with the results.
Out of the first couple results (from 792,000,000) we find:
“7 best exercises for getting abs”
“10 exercises you should be doing”
“Is cardio making your waistline bigger?”
and countless others.
How on earth are we supposed to digest all of this and what advice should we actually take?
Relax. Take a deep breath. It doesn’t need to be this hard.
Choose “Unprocessed” exercise.
Here’s the secret formula for exercise:
Simple + unprocessed = beneficial
Use this formula and you can stop worrying about:
- How many reps is the “perfect” amount?
- What if other people lift more than me?
- I couldn’t finish my workout… was it a waste?
- Am I going to slow?
- Where should I be feeling “the burn?”
- Am I doing the best cardio for this?
Don’t overthink it and don’t over-analyze.
Nike had it right when they said “Just Do It!”
You’ve been moving since you were born – your body already knows how to do this!
Sometimes you just need to trust it.
Don’t get caught up in exact numbers, what the person next to you is doing or what the so-called “internet experts” are saying you should be doing.
The only analysis tool you need to use is our favorite tool to use with clients:
“How’s that working for you?”
Listen. There’s no magic pill, no perfect workout plan and no “best” exercise.
Get moving and stay moving as often as possible. Keep it as diverse and intense as you can.
What to focus on
- Keep it simple – use what you have.
Just move. As often as possible with whatever you’ve got.
- Move as often as possible
Try getting purposeful movement in daily or as often as you can. If you have a regular exercise program, stay consistent with it and try to get little “bonus movement” in when possible – like taking the stairs or parking farther away from the store.
- Doing something is better than doing nothing.
If you don’t have the time to dedicate to a whole workout, doing a few minutes is still better than doing nothing. You’ll lap all those people sitting on the couch.
- Your focus should be on moving well.
Before adding weights or increasing intensity, make sure your form is correct. Ask a trainer, coach and/or read up on what you’re doing. Proper technique must come first.
- Use what’s available to you
You don’t need to have the “perfect setup” to get a workout in. If you have two working legs, you can walk. If you have heavy stuff laying around, you can pick it up and put it back down.Use olympic luger Shiva Keshavan for example. He doesn’t have a huge track to practice on.
No problem, he makes use of the mountain highways in India to take his sled down instead. Talk about creative problem solving!If he can get to the olympics sledding down highways and dodging goats along the way, you can probably figure out some way to exercise, too.
- Make exercise enjoyable for YOU.
Choose exercises you enjoy. Adjust them to fit your fitness level, injuries etc. and go at your own pace.Some of the best bodies in the world are from people who don’t necessarily work out but “play” instead.
For example, check out this short interview with BMX rider Nigel Sylvester, who posed in the buff for ESPN’s 2014 Body Issue.
- Keep it fun.
Whether you love tennis, bowling, ballroom dancing, dodgeball or even competitive cup stacking… just get moving! This is your time to do something for your body.
How are you able to “unprocess” your fitness? Let us know in the comments!