As much as I’d hoped Will was going to get on fire for working out, turns out the guy hates exercise.
I get it.
Sometimes I forget a large percentage of people don’t find exercising “fun” at all!
It’s a workout, after all.
I tend to get overzealous about fitness and need a gentle reminder that, “Hey! Not everyone gets batty over burpees and shoulder presses!”
Thank you, Will.
So what do we do when we’re close to people that don’t love fitness as much as we do?
I thought of heaps, but here are just a few thoughts based on my own experience.
1. Don’t cram it down their throat
They get it, we LOVE fitness, but that doesn’t mean they do.
I usually do a good job of never annoying or bombarding Will with stats on health, but when he expressed interest in working out, I kind of sort of forgot rule number one.
Here’s the deal.
Most non-fitness enthusiasts don’t need to hear about heart disease, diabetes, or how sitting is the new smoking.
I’ve found most people already have a good idea they’re not healthy, and our gentle reminders often hurt more than help.
If I want to get Will to the gym, I’ve found I’ve got to obey #1. It’s got to be his decision, not mine.
2. Invite, but don’t beg
Again, same as number one. It’s gotta be their decision.
I just about always extend an invite to Will, and he always passes. However, a few weeks ago he actually said yes!
He said the fact that I didn’t pester or beg him to go was helpful. Asking is one thing, but begging? Let’s not be over-the-top, here!
3. Don’t have them do the same workout you’re doing
Non-fitness enthusiasts need to ease into working out just like we did when we first started.
Having them do an advanced workout risks injury! Get them in the gym, and get them started on something manageable.
You wouldn’t give an infant steak, so size up workouts accordingly!
4. Celebrate the small stuff
It’s a good idea not to go full commando on them.
Yes it’s a lifestyle, but their version of lifestyle it looks way different than ours.
Will would never start out with a goal to do a marathon next month. Little victories like actually making it to the gym three times a week for a month is a huge deal for my guy, and it should be acknowledged and celebrated.
5. When all else fails, remember Rome wasn’t built in a day
I’ve seen lots of ups and downs over the years. Full bore commitment, with many (many, many) droughts in between.
It sometimes hurts my heart when I reflect on a loved one’s bad eating and exercise decisions. They know I care, but make the same decisions anyway. It’s hard sometimes!
Much like the above points, I really try to be a positive, healthy influence instead of a condemning one.
For example, Will knows we’re always going to have healthy dinners. I don’t have much “control” over what he eats for breakfast and lunch most days, but I always know he’ll get a healthy dinner.
Would he love cheese fries for dinner? Of course (Um...so would I!).
He acknowledges its important to eat healthy and is thankful I care enough to make sure at least one meal is!
Baby steps can be huge in this arena, and we have to claim each one, every step of the way.
So yeah, a lot of people aren’t as enthusiastic as we are about being healthy. Let’s try to remember that. I’ve personally found the above points (as well as many more!) have been helpful in my own life and wanted to share.
Thanks for checking in! See you tomorrow!