Episode 62: Easy Exercise Motivation, Part III

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Does it matter how you get yourself to exercise? Isn’t guilt as good a motivator as any? What if it’s not? What if there were a better way. In today’s episode, learn how to both amp up the effectiveness and enjoyment of your workouts while reducing your risk for injuries in this deliciously delightful motivation makeover.

Transcript

Renee Stephens: Welcome to “Inside Out Weight Loss”. I’m your host Renee Stephens and together we are accessing and adjusting the control panel of your mind/body system, bringing ease and joy to your weight-loss journey and fullness to the rest of your life.

On today’s show, a word of warning to guilt-driven exercisers and how to amp up the effectiveness of your workouts by creating delightfully delicious motivation.

Although I’ve never been fat, my weight has yo-yoed about 25 pounds fairly often in my past 10 years. I’ve tried all sorts of diets and always knew that the problem was emotional and intrinsic and binging was just the expression of that emotional weakness.

And look at Oprah. Oprah made her name, Oprah is the celebrity self-help guress that she is because she shared the details of her horrendous past. The past though, that makes her who she is today.

I have to confess that I have a couple of clients right now that are actually working out less as a result of our work together. Now, you might think, why the heck is she admitting that? That doesn’t sound like an endorsement! I can tell you that they are much happier and healthier because they are now finding a different type of motivation for exercise.

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Renee Stephens: A special welcome to new listeners to this show. We’re so glad you found us. There’s a thriving community built around living the principles of inside out weight-loss and the Renee Method. You might take a moment to set your intent about what you would like to get out of this episode. Intent setting is a powerful way to program your subconscious mind to get exactly what you want or something even better.

Did I mention a great book on intent setting? It’s called “The Intention Experiment” by Lynne McTaggart. It’s full of the latest mind-bending scientific research on the power of intent. A power we’re only beginning to understand scientifically, yet that some have harvested since the beginning of time.

Oh yes, new listeners that’s right, that’s where I was. Jump right into today’s episode and I encourage you to go back to the beginning and start there by listening to the prologue where you’ll hear my personal story. Then progress to the Critical Foundations steps, presented in the early episodes. Take your time to digest each episode, each concept, each tool.

Also, consider joining the Yahoo group to support and be supported. There’s a link available at my blog: www.personallifemedia.com/renee. And if you like what you hear you may want to go even deeper by purchasing the three guided journeys available for sale on my site. A link is also provided at the blog.

Now let’s take a moment to drop inside. To check in and be present with you. This time that you’ve given yourself to listen to this episode, whether or not you’re delighted with what you find here, is a time that you have put yourself first. So take a moment to be present with you as I share a moment of bliss, courtesy of blisstrips.com.

Tune in to the wisdom of the sage owl. The one that knows how to notice the world. Perch yourself on a limb and see what you see. Open yourself to powerful senses, those that are heightened in the deep of night. Perfectly still, see what’s waiting to be seen. With sensitive ears, hear what’s waiting to be heard. Be aware of all that is around you and open yourself to what is to be known.

Perhaps that’s your intent for today then. To hear what is waiting to be heard. To see what is waiting to be seen. Perhaps it’s the truth about what’s been holding you back.

I’d like to share a comment from an Inside Out Weight Loss listener named Lisa. Lisa writes:
“Hi Renee. I just wanted say thank you for your podcast. It’s truly exceptional and helpful in a way that I have not yet encountered in my struggle. Although I’ve never been fat, my weight has yo-yoed about 25 pounds fairly often in my past 10 years. I’ve tried all sorts of diets and always knew that the problem was emotional and intrinsic and binging was just the expression of that emotional weakness. Since listening to your podcast, in the past few weeks I’ve lost 7 pounds and rather easily at that. I attribute this weight loss to really looking inside myself and determining the cause of the weight gain.

You had discussed something in your podcast that I wasn’t conscious of, but when you said it I knew without a doubt that this was my main issue. I was intentionally taking myself out of the market to ensure fidelity. What a crazy thing to do! But it makes perfect sense.

And then I was developing what I call “fat rage”, when, as a fat woman, you feel easily threatened by other more attractive slender women. And I found myself thinking bitchy mean thoughts. I honestly didn’t like the person that I was becoming.

Anyway, thank you. I’m back on the path to feeling more like myself again, physically and mentally. Your podcast is refreshing. I have to admit I’m quite a sceptic about self-help type media, so I feel that you’ve struck a major coup in winning me over.”

I want to thank you Lisa for opening up and sharing that with me and allowing me to share it with all of you. Some people are afraid of opening up, of taking that personal risk, of exposing themselves. And yet, there’s little I treasure more than someone sharing authentically with me. Not everyone is like this, I know, and that’s why I’ve created the Yahoo group. And I’m soon to create a more intimate forum as well so that people can support and be supported, so that they can truly share what’s going on for them.

I remember reading recently Elizabeth Gilbert’s “Eat, Pray, Love” and I was astounded by her in-depth honesty because some of it could be construed as really embarrassing. And yet look what happened to that book. People were taken in by it because of her authenticity.

And look at Oprah. Oprah made her name, Oprah is the celebrity self-help guress that she is because she shared the details of her horrendous past. The past though, that makes her who she is today.

And recently on the cover as big and beautiful as possible, of the December issue of “O” magazine, is Oprah admitting that she’s gained weight again, that she’s once again hit the dreaded 200 pounds. Now what kind of courage does it take for someone with the eyes on her that Oprah has, to open up and share her own struggle? I admire that and I’m inspired by that in a way that nothing else really touches me.

It gives me a connection, it makes me feel human and OK. Because other people struggle, I have my own internal struggles and hearing that other people are out there saying, “You know what? We’re all the same” is just such a wonderful, positive way to truly connect and inspire other human beings.

So thank you Lisa. Thank you for sharing and opening up.

So as you sink further into this episode, into the exquisite imperfection, the exquisite humanity of your authentic self, know that there truly are others just like you and that your truth, your struggle, your joy, your progress, your growth – unite you with them.

So open your heart to the presence of fellow journeyers listening to this show. Send them your support of their intention to end the weight struggle and develop and share their souls’ gifts. And feel their support come back to you, carrying you as if you were floating gently down a river on a delightful raft. The warm sun melting the weight off your body as it’s carried away by the gentle breeze. Open up to the realm of collective intent.

We’ve been talking about exercise motivation. Not only have we been talking about it, we’ve been motivating about it. I’m interested to know if you’ve done your homework. If you’ve thought about the things that you think about when you think about exercise.

If you wrote down that list on one side in small and squishy writing all of the negatives about exercise and on the other side of the paper in big, beautiful, colourful, bold writing all of the positives of exercising. And if you haven’t done that already, go ahead and do that in your mind now.

Be sure to make all those negatives small and dark and squishy and all of those positives big, bold, colourful, close and beautiful. And by the way, a word of warning to guilt-driven exercisers after the break.

We need to take a break now to support our sponsors. This is Renee Stephens and you’re listening to Inside Out Weight Loss on Personal Life Media.

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Renee Stephens: We’re back now. Before the break I was issuing a word of warning to guilt-driven exercisers. What is a guilt-driven exerciser? You may be asking. Guilt-driven exercisers are the ones who are in the gym to pound away those excess calories from the latest over-indulgence. Or the ones that are there in anticipation of a complete lack of control in the near future. Those are the guilt-driven exercisers: the ones who are atoning for sins committed or expected to be committed in the near future.

In other words you’ve gone head-first into the chocolate cake and now it’s going to take two hours on the Elliptical to get you even close to what you just downed in a couple of minutes. Those are the guilt-driven exercisers.

I know a thing or two about them because I was one. That’s right. I got my first job in a gym because I felt like there was no way that I could control my eating so at least if I was in a gym environment I’d be inspired to spend more time exercising and I might have a chance of not ballooning out like the Good Year blimp.

And by the way, it was a somewhat effective strategy. Better than the strategy my friend took: It’s going to be bad, I’m going to get a job in a bakery. That didn’t end well either I might add.

You might be saying, “Well what the heck is wrong with guilt-driven exercise? At least I’m exercising.” And I couldn’t agree more; at least you’re exercising, this is good. But guilt-driven exercise, in my opinion, this is a suspicion, this is a hunch that I have, that guilt-driven exercise is not as effective at fitness-enhancing as exercise motivation that comes from a place of a deep desire to do something really wonderful for yourself. A deep desire to enhance your health and vitality.

Kind of like eating. Eating healthy food, when you come at it from a deep desire to treat yourself like royalty, a deep desire to treat yourself exquisitely, is a totally different experience than eating healthfully because that’s what a diet tells you that you have to do and you can only eat X, Y and Z. It’s a totally different experience.

I have to confess that I have a couple of clients right now that are actually working out less as a result of our work together. Now you might think, “Why the heck is she admitting that? That doesn’t sound like an endorsement!” I can tell you that they are much happier and healthier because they are now finding a different type of motivation for exercise.

One client was running 40-45 miles a week so that she could run marathons every couple of months to counteract the binging that she engaged in on a daily basis. Another client was running two hours a day, getting up at some crazy hour in the morning, it was like 3:30 or something ridiculous in the morning so she could spend two hours on the treadmill in the gym or running outside, only to end up with a stress-based injury.

And top coaches and trainers will tell you that over-exercising does contribute to injury. Guilt-based exercising I might suggest, I might guess, would could more injuries than non-guilt based exercising, which is in fact a bad way to say it. How about, exercise based on treating yourself exquisitely? We’ll call it indulgent exercise. I like the sound of that, don’t you? Indulgent exercise. You’re going to indulge in a workout, a selfish workout, so that you can feel great for the rest of the day. So that you can feel great for the rest of the week and for the rest of your life while you’re at it!

I think I’ve shared with you before that personally I don’t really care that much about a huge quantity of life as much as I care about quality of life. That’s what I really care about. While I’m here, while I’m going, I want to be completely mobile, completely active, able to pursue my dreams and do whatever the heck I want. That’s what I care about. And exercise creates that reality for me now.

Indulgence-based exercise. Exercise that is motivated by a deep desire to feel great. Yes, a deep desire to feel great and have all of the wonderful benefits that it provides. And yes, the truth is I like to look great too, another bonus of exercise.

So if you’re a guilt-driven exerciser, I want you to take a moment to step back and tune in to that wonderful, miraculous body of yours and ask it what it wants. I want you to tune in and not go for the place of “I’m going to just plough through this low energy that I have because I’ve got to get this workout done, I’ve got to get it done.” But rather take a step back and tune into what your body would love to do. Maybe it needs a rest. Maybe it wants to do something more gentle. Perhaps it wants to open up to some yoga and stretching, deep stretching to provide flexibility of body and, by the way, of mind while you’re at it.

Perhaps a little Tai Chi. Perhaps it would like to tear up the dance floor with some exuberant dance classes or dancing to your favourite tunes in the living room, toddler in tow! Or puppy or kitten or whatever else the heck you’d like to have with you.

Your job, your homework, is to find something that really makes your body sing. That really makes your body go, “Oh that would be absolutely deliciously delightful to do right now.”

So you over-the-top-ees let go for a moment. Put aside those ambitious goals and those power it through – I remember the mantra when I was working in the gym was “No pain no gain”. We’re going to let that go, we’re going to let that “get tough with ourselves” plan go for now and we’re going to indulge in deliciously delightful movement that feeds our heart, soul and bodies. And I want you to tell me about what you are doing that feels great on the blog at personallifemedia.com/renee.

Now I’m fully aware that for some of you, you’re not an over-the-top-ee. You’re a “I-want-to-be-an-over-the-top-ee” , oh I would be so lucky if I were an over-the-top-ee. Kind of like those crazy, crazy thoughts that I used to have when I was younger. It’s like: Man, if I could just get anorexic for a little while, wouldn’t that be great? Mamma Mia, the crazy thoughts that floated through my crazy head at that time, just a sign of my desperation.

OK so, now, back to those of you who are really excited and interested and ready to get up off that sofa and get that body moving because it feels fabulous. To clarify, it feels fabulous afterwards. It feels so great to have done it. If you get an activity that feels fabulous during, then you have found nirvana. That is the Holy Grail of exercise. But, for those of us on a schedule; sometimes we settle for, and maybe this is my own limitation, for things that just feel dynamite for hours and hours and days and weeks and months and years afterwards. I love it. And I’m willing to make the investment, even if it’s on the Elliptical.

Oh, and there’s one more thing that I wanted to say about those guilt-driven exercisers. And that is that the bummer about the whole thing is that when exercise is guilt-driven, it appears that it isn’t all that effective at dropping weight. I mean it’s somewhat effective, it kind of works. But it ends up being that really hard grinding struggle where you fight for every ounce that leaves you body or you seem to do so much and yet you lose inches and not pounds and oh my gosh, it’s so frustrating.

I suspect that it has a whole lot to do with the energy that you put into the exercise. That it’s negative. That it’s guilt-driven. Just a hypothesis at this point, based on my own experience and that of a whole slew of my clients, I might add.

Did I tell you that when I ran the one marathon that I run, I thought: Surely if I’m running that much, hours at a time, I’m going to drop some weight. And, guess what? I gained like two or three pounds. That was a bummer. Are you surprised I did only one marathon? And it’s all because my motivation was coming from a guilt-negative place.

So the good news for those of you who are dreaming of dancing and dynamic movement, is that as you create your exercise motivation now, perhaps from scratch, that you can create it from this place of positivity, from this sincere desire to treat yourself fabulously. So that you are fabulously fit, so that you are in the best body that you can possibly be in.
The highest expression of the body that you have been given.

That brings us to the end of our show now. Thank you for being present. The Personal Life Media Network is all about positive personal development. Check out all of the great shows available there at personallifemedia.com.

And be sure to check out all the resources from links to the Yahoo group to the guided journeys that can accelerate your progress available on my site. Go to the blog at www.personallife.com/renee. This is your host Renee Stephens and I am on a mission to eradicate the weight struggle from the planet, enabling you to share your soul’s gifts. Join me as we evolve the world by evolving ourselves. Take good care.

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