I have been exercising consistently my entire adult life. I like the way it makes me feel, it helps me maintain my weight and it keeps me strong. But the real secret to staying engaged all these years has been figuring out how to make exercise fun. For me, that means turning it into a social activity, too.
And a recent DNA test proved that need is actually coded in my genes! Among the findings compiled in my personalized Vitagene Vitality Guide was this: I have “low interest” in exercise routines — it actually said that! The report suggested exercising outdoors, with friends or in competition as ways to spark my interest in physical activity. Check, check and check!
I am absolutely blessed with a core group of girlfriends who also enjoy running, biking and lifting weights. Over the years, we have kept each other honest by setting up early morning runs and bike rides, and signing up for weight-lifting classes together. Not showing up is not an option!
It’s not just physical activity that brings us together. We genuinely like each other and have fostered a deep level of trust. We all abide by the absolute rule that our confidential conversations during our workouts stay in “the vault!”
We share our joys, our heartaches, and all the ups and downs that are a natural part of life. When I was going through a tough time at work, my running partners got an earful — and a faster-than-usual pace as I picked it up while recounting my workplace issues. We know when to just listen and when to offer advice.
I was sidelined the first half of this year recovering from a broken ankle, and I really missed my run therapy! Seeing my friends was a real motivator to rehabbing that ankle and getting back out there.
So while the social strategy may not appeal to everyone, it’s my secret to exercise consistency. And I have a 30-year track record that shows it really does work for me!