Why I Love Exercise

Although I mostly post about food, this is supposed to be a lifestyle blog, so I thought I’d break from the norm and talk about something a little different: exercise!

Anyone who knows me knows that I have never been a lover of formal exercise.  The first time I truly got in shape was in high school.  I homeschooled and needed something to count as gym, so I began lifting light weights and working out with some exercise videos we had around the house.  I was also into Dance Dance Revolution at the time, and I would do that both for fun and as a cardio workout.

After high school, though, I pretty much lost interest.  I still played some DDR, but abandoned anything like a regular workout schedule.  Let’s face it, exercise can be boring.  It requires time and effort, and is a sweaty and uncomfortable endeavor a lot of the time.  Thinking about that didn’t give me a whole lot of motivation to get back to working out.

Then, a couple of years ago, I looked at myself and realized that I was sadly out of shape.  I didn’t look bad, per se, but I knew my muscles weren’t what they could be, or even what they should be.  I had tried to get into an exercise regimen multiple times in the past without lasting success, so I’m not sure what motivated me this time.  Whatever it was, it worked.  I’ve been exercising five days a week ever since, and recently added yoga on weekends.  My regimen includes resistance training, weight lifting, and a variety of home exercise DVDs.

To clarify, I still don’t love the act of exercising itself.  There are a lot of things I find uncomfortable or frustrating, and I really hate hauling my butt out of a warm bed during the winter in order to get in a morning workout.  However, I can’t deny that I love the effects of regular exercise!  Sweating through a half hour or an hour workout every morning has really paid off.  I’m able to lift more weight than I ever have before, and many of the little aches and pains I used to suffer are gone.  The thing I’m most proud of is my resting heart rate, which used to range between 75 and 85–it’s now between 55 and 65.

So what I really love exercise for are the benefits.  I’m hoping that I can keep up my current level of fitness for a long time.  After being this much in shape, I can’t imagine losing it!

Question for the comments: What’s your favorite way to work out?