I’m so not a morning person.
I don’t know about you, but I’d rather do just about anything other then get up early.
Back in my corporate days, I used to have fantasies of being ultra productive by getting up at 5 AM to hit the gym before work. Never. Happened.
Every morning when the alarm went off, almost like a knee-jerk reaction, I would hit the off button and continue sleeping until the very last moment I could get away with.
I bring this up because recently I have noticed a change.
I am still not a morning person. But I have found a way to get myself up at the crack of dawn to exercise, and yes I am actually pretty pumped about it.
Turns out I’ve discovered how to crack my own code. My code: SURFING.
You know Nick and I talk a lot about our love for surfing here at Saltwater Fit. You’ve undoubtedly seen pictures and heard stories from us riding those glorious blue walls of water.
But this change in my behavior got us thinking about why surfing has this power over me. Why am I willing to get up when the roosters are crowing with a big wide grin on my face?
What we came to realize is this.
Exercise can be an easy and effortless part of your life if you find exercise that you really enjoy and you understand your deeper purpose for why you are doing it in the first place.
Love The Way You Move
If you want exercise to be a consistent and maintainable part of your life, you’ve got to enjoy it. We say #lovethewayyoumove. Or at least like how you move, otherwise it will become progressively harder and harder to do. You’ll start finding excuses not to do it. And before you know it, exercise will become a thing of the past.
Nick and I have talked before about the importance of discovering your active passion.
Active Passion is the physical activity that brings you joy, requires little motivation, and you look forward to doing it. Placing this activity at the center of your exercise routine makes it become an easy and effortless part of your life.
I am sure it is no surprise that our active passion is surfing 🙂 . It follows all the requirements: we love it, it brings us joy, we need to harness little motivation to do it, and we are always looking forward to the next time.
But we discovered something else, even more powerful than active passion. When your active passion doesn’t serve up enough motivation on it’s own, you can use this to give yourself a boost.
Discover Your Why
When you understand deeply why it is important for you to exercise in the first place, you discover your own personal pool of unlimited motivation to draw from.
You need to know your “why”.
Let me explain.
Adopting new behaviors or habits in support of a healthy lifestyle is not easy. It takes deliberate energy and sustained focus at least initially. So it is helpful to be really clear on why you are doing that particular thing.
It’s not enough to know we should be doing something. When our doctor tells us to do more weight bearing exercise for our bones, we may hit the weight sections next time we go to the gym. But the chances of us sticking with it are pretty slim.
Or when a trainer tells us we should eat more veggies like broccoli and cauliflower to lose that last 10lbs. We’ll make an effort for at least a meal until we remember how much we dislike eating veggies and eventually ditch the effort all together.
Without our unique, compelling reason as to why we are doing something it doesn’t stick.
We humans are resistant to change, by nature. (Except, as Nick likes to say, the only one who likes to change is a baby with a wet diaper).
So in order to adopt new behaviors we need a compelling reason, something personally powerful to us.
It must come from our own heart.
So ask yourself, why do you care deeply about being fit and healthy?
Is it because you want to be the best version of yourself to make your dreams a reality? Or maybe it’s because you want to be a shining example to your daughter?
Whatever it is, this question is worth inquiring into and one you shouldn’t give up on until you get to the root cause. Answering the question, “to look great at the beach”, is fine but not powerful enough. You need to keep asking yourself why. “Why is it important to look great at the beach? “Ask yourself why, over and over, until you get to an answer that you can feel in your body or that makes you cry. Then you know you’ve hit it.
Just imagine, you’re sitting on the couch after work feeling tired and unmotivated to go exercise, you’re about to throw in the towel, when you remember how you want to be fit and healthy enough to play soccer with your daughter. Bringing to mind your why fuels you with the motivation to overcome your temporary lull in motivation.
Pretty powerful, right?
For Nick and I, surfing is a big part of our why. When we ask ourselves the question, why is it important for us to stay fit, agile, lean, flexible, and injury-free?
A resounding answer of: To surf more waves comes up for both of us.
If we go even deeper, the answer is to become the best version of ourselves so we can make all our dreams come true.
One of my dreams is to still be surfing when I am 70☺.
With that being said, you now know why surfing is such a big part of our brand here at Saltwater Fit and also our healthy lives.
So now it’s your turn, what is your “why”? What is your deeper purpose for wanting to be healthy and fit? We would be honored if you’d share here :).