How To Make Yourself Love Exercise

Thinking about exercise can be intimidating, but a new study published in the journal BMC Public Health suggests people could learn to enjoy exercise by simply tweaking their beliefs and expectations about it. University of Michigan researchers asked 40 women about what really would make them feel happy and successful. The data showed all the women turned out to want the same things in life: to have meaningful connections with others, to feel relaxed and free of pressure during their leisure time and to accomplish the goals they’d set for themselves. The big difference was that women who were inactive viewed exercise as counterproductive to those things. They thought valid exercise had to be vigorous, took up to much time, and that following an exercise program put too much pressure on them. Women who exercised regularly didn’t share these views. For them, exercise went hand-in-hand with their desires for social connectivity, relaxing leisure time, and feeling accomplished. Researchers say if you can change your views, for example, realize that brisk walking counts as exercise, and that you can use physical activity as a way to relax, then you can learn to love exercise. (Time