Have you ever stopped to consider that when it comes to fitness we may be just a little too comfortable? When the desire for comfort keeps us from stepping outside of our comfort zones, we should reevaluate ourselves objectively. Why do we give up when a workout is tough? Why are we willing to get up early to go fishing or hunting, but can’t seem to do so to squeeze in some physical activity? Why can’t we suck up a little temporary pain for a lifestyle of healthy habits? Why can’t we say “no” to junk food? The answer is that we like what we like and want what we want because it’s all about being comfortable.
As a crossfitter, I am thankful for the never-ending workouts that challenge me, the workouts that whoop my butt and make me feel so out of shape when I know I’m not. It’s these workouts that I am thankful for because without them, I would never truly know what my body is capable of. Though I grew up an athlete and have lifted weights since I was 16, I never walked into a gym and thought Oh, I think I’ll do 150 wall ball shots today as fast as I can, or You know what? I think I’ll run one mile, then do 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 squats, then run another mile. I love to workout and be active in every possible way, but there’s always something easy about playing it safe. It’s in the safe zones we always want more and are never truly satisfied. It’s in the safe zones that we give in to our temptations to eat unhealthy foods or lay in the bed a little longer simply because we are just plain comfortable.
This month, as summer travels begin to wrap up and you regain a sense of normalcy and routine, try something new, something that challenges you. Maybe you’ve always wanted to take martial arts or a dance class. Maybe you’ve always wanted to run a half marathon or ride a century bike ride. Maybe you’ve always wanted to compete in an Olympic lifting contest, or maybe you’ve just wanted to start a new routine and actually stick with it. Whatever your goal is, you owe it to yourself to step outside of your comfort zone and make it happen.
Lauren’s workouts to get you outside of your comfort zone:
[ 50 double unders + 50 bodyweight squats ] x 5 rounds
Modification: 150 jump rope singles instead of 50 doubles.
Challenge: Finish in under 10 minutes
Complete [ 100 squats + 100 push-ups + 100 sit-ups + 1-mile run ] as fast as possible
Challenge: Finish in under 20 minutes
Have fun outside your comfort zone, you might enjoy it more than you think!
Lauren Peper and Jennifer Broughton are the health coaches and personal trainers behind Two Fit Girls, a Raleigh, NC-based company specializing in health coaching, boot camps and healthy foods. Learn more >
For more on getting out of your comfort zone: