There’s a lot of shit on the internet that tells you how to workout, but not how it should feel. To be fair, there are endless approaches to working out and they all work for each person differently.
The one thing that falls short is the information you actually need that helps you understand how a workout should feel. There’s this misconception that you need to beat the ever-living shit out of your body to achieve your goals, but that’s not true.
But, William how do you know this? Well beloved reader let me tell you something that you may already know, I’m notorious for fucking around and finding out (FAFO). FAFO teaches you a lot about what doesn’t work and what you could do differently. It’s my way of doing science experiments on myself.
Where FAFO started
One of my most vivid childhood memories was the time when I was 5 years old and had my first jolly rancher.
My mother specifically said “don’t eat this because you’ll choke”. I heard and understood what she said but I wanted to find out if I actually would choke. I wasn’t doubting her or trying to be defiant, I was just curious and also like candy.
I stayed in the car while she went inside for something, that’s when I grabbed a jolly rancher. I unwrapped the tin foil like a mad man and saw this bright yellow lemon-flavored waffle shaped candy. After a brief moment of amazement, I popped it in my mouth. Within seconds I realized that she was right.
The lady who saved my life
My mother came back to the car to see her son being strangled by the candy she specifically said not to eat. So as any caring mother would, she used her hands as a makeshift jaws of life to stop me from choking completely. This is one of the many life lessons I learned from fucking around and finding out what would happen.
Which brings us to the main point of this blog, to share with you what I learned from doing workouts that don’t work. I want to share with you what workouts should and shouldn’t feel like for those who are unsure.
Workouts shouldn’t feel like
Your workouts shouldn’t feel over exhausting (making one feel very tired). Your body can only withhold a specific amount of stress, also known as your window of tolerance. Going to complete exhaustion each workout doesn’t give your body the proper amount of time to recover from the previous days workout. Lacking recovery can lead to some serious harm.
Your workouts shouldn’t feel like they’re unachievable (too difficult to achieve) to do. For example, if you’re brand new to working out, there’s no way you can expect yourself to do 100 pushups on your day one or to lose 50 pounds in two months. It’s just ridiculous to hold yourself to such high expectations when you’re just starting out.
Your workouts shouldn’t feel discouraging (causing someone to lose confidence or enthusiasm). For example, if a workout that is having you do 100 sit-ups, 200 squats, and 300 pull ups that will leave you feeling discouraged because of how fucking hard that sounds. This is not helpful because then you don’t feel that you’re able to do this and to be honest, this is not a good workout to do. Workouts like these don’t encourage you to meet yourself where you’re at.
Your workouts shouldn’t make you feel as if you need to be physically destructive (causing great harm or damage) with your body. Being physically destructive means that you’re using exercise as punishment, instead of promoting health. An example of exercise as punishment is trying to work off the ice cream you ate with doing a longer or harder workout. This mindset leads to a very unhealthy relationship with fitness.
Your workouts shouldn’t feel unproductive (not effective in bringing benefits), meaning that you’re just going to “burn calories”. The workouts that have specific number of calories designed to be burnt are red flags. The reason I say that is because they aren’t helping you improve anything, they’re just getting you hot and sweaty. I can do that eating hot wings, but that doesn’t improve anything in my day to day life.
What they should feel:
Your workouts should feel refreshing (give new strength or energy to). This means that you feel better physically and mentally afterwards. Often times I hear our members saying how much energy they have or how better they feel from doing our workouts. Healthy workouts leave you feeling refreshed to concur the day!
Your workouts should feel empowering (give someone the power to do something) for you and your goals. Having SMART goals should be specific, measurable, attainable, reasonable, and time orientated. For example, if you don’t workout right now that’s totally fine. The rest of us didn’t start here either. But you can start wherever and whenever with little to nothing to start with. I started a 7-year habit of starting my day with 5 minutes of movement/meditation by beginning with 2 minutes a day and gradually adding more time each week.
Your workouts should feel encouraging (giving someone support or confidence) for you by having fun and enjoy working on your health. It’s hard if you’re in an environment that isn’t encouraging you to do better. At Restored Strength we focus on encouraging our members to make small habitual changes in their life. For example, if you’re eating 7 snickers a day, instead of having to cut them out cold turkey, let’s work on eating 6 a day, then over time we will find a way to keep your snickers but at a lesser degree of harm towards your health. You can eat candy and still be healthy.
Your workouts should have exercises that feel restorative (having the ability to restore health, strength, or a feeling of well-being) with your old or current injuries. Often times we go through life with some type of injury big or small, that impacts are day to day functions. All of the workouts we create have restorative exercises that help with our members with functional activities in their day such as walking, going up stairs, carrying in groceries, playing with grandkids, and much more.
Your workouts should feel productive (producing large amount of goods) in how they improve your life. Productive workouts help you build the confidence and independence you deserve to have. No one regrets being strong or having the energy to do difficult things in their daily routine.
At Restored Strength, we believe that everyone has the ability to restore their strength to live a healthy and bad ass life. If you’re ready to take back control of your life, email us to see how we can help you restore your strength today.