170. Try this shift

fitness mental fitness Sep 01, 2021

By: Michael Beiter

The human brain is a fascinating thing.

One of our hardwired abilities is how we conserve energy.

Our brains and bodies are energy conserving machines. Via experience we learn what costs a lot of energy and attention and what doesn't.

If the action is pleasurable you will get a good feeling for attending to it and giving it energy. It benefitted you and in the future you will be more likely to seek that experience out. 

If the thing is painful you will get a bad feeling for attending to it and giving it energy and in the future it will be more difficult for you to decide to do that thing again. 

This assessment of energy needs and resulting mood feeling happens subconsciously. It makes choosing to work out harder than sitting on the couch because working out causes more pain and takes more energy.

You are not a fool for having a hard time being motivated to work out. As a matter of fact, you are thinking rationally in a way that conserves energy and avoids pain. You are being smart.

However, understanding this doesn't make working out easier. It just explains why it is so hard. 

To shift your actions you must begin assessing your workouts for the pleasures they produce . Both in the long and short term.

Rather than looking at the energy cost and short term pain associated with exercise think of the long term gains to health, vitality, vigor, mood, energy, etc. 

Lastly, to enjoy exercise it is necessary for a lot of people to significantly reduce the intensity of their workouts. 

It will be damn near impossible to get yourself motivated to go to the gym every day if all you experience is misery, pain, and ass kickings due to your workouts being harder than they need to be. 

Get in, stimulate your body to feel good with movement, and get out. 

Live to exercise another day. Motivate yourself and beat your subconscious thinking by evaluating the pleasures and benefits that come from your exercise rather than focusing on the pains and costs. 


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