What do you think about on the treadmill (or your bike, walk, run, swim?) The treadmill (and stationary bike) are a little like the shower for me. I get some great thoughts – and can’t text myself or jot good notes on the treadmill. But sometimes, they stay with me long enough to jot them down!
I realized last week there are a couple of good lessons I’ve learned, as I “walk to nowhere” at my gym.
First, what I did a few months ago won’t suffice for today. This goes right to the heart of growth and being stretched and sharpened. It also slices into the excuses that used to flow out of me whenever I even thought about exercise. All of it started about three years ago, when I innocently told my wife: “We need to go back to Weight Watchers!” That was the beginning of the end for me – the end of some excuses I’d practiced for decades and uttered as often as needed, in response to an invitation to go, do, participate, hike, etc, etc.
See, I had sciatica, knee pain, hip pain – I mean, exercise was – well, “impossible” for me – at least most kinds! At Weight Watchers I learned that activity has to be part of the mix! And not only that, a year or so in, I learned that a little is good, but doing the same “little” after a month or two or three, is kind of like doing what I used to: nothing.
Activity needs to increase – because my stamina increases and my heart rate and respiration won’t get worked over the longer term unless the speed and resistance are increased! What works for today won’t work for a month from now. The same is true in a marriage – or with business growth – or your mental or spiritual “diet and exercise” for that matter. We need stretching and development of all kinds! It feels good. It is good. But it needs to increase, incrementally, sometimes gradually, but always steadily!
A second lesson: what I do today is great for today – but I still need to come back tomorrow or the day after and so on… I’ve figured it out! Exercise is just like shaving (or showering or cleaning up after your kids or pets). It doesn’t really matter if you get tired of it, it’s still a need. It doesn’t matter if boredom sets in – you still need to get after it! (And boredom can be dealt with — change things up, exercise with friends, etc). But, “tired or bored” or my plain old lazy nature just don’t give me sufficient reason to stop doing what is a great and heathy habit in life.
Again – marriage and the rest of life come into play. How often you hear men or women say, “I’m bored in this marriage” or “this ___________ (job/assignment/company, etc) just doesn’t excite me anymore.” Lots of bad decisions get made out of boredom which, seen in another light, would be made quite differently. It could be what I need at the moment isn’t a major change, it’s a major change of attitude or some new perspective; I may need to marshal some resources to re-inspire me or some new accountability to reinvigorate the original goal I had when I began.
Are you also on a journey away from your excuses and out of your former comfort zone? We’d love to hear about it!