Why So Serious? Looking After Yourself Can be Fun
What does wellness mean? Does “feeling well” even cut it? Or is it more of a combination of being happy mentally, physically and happy with our relationships?
We often look to others for help to find these and then pray to all things holy that we can then find it within ourselves after a considerable amount of research and effort. Role models and, dare I say, “idols” can inspire this. Whether said idol is Chris Hemsworth or a fitness influencer who finds his triceps far more interesting than his personal relationships, Middle Eastern politics and just about everything else for that matter.
Flashback to me being a skinny teenager and buying male fitness magazines for some good ole fitspo, wanting to look just like those cover models with abs you could grate cheese on. I remember thinking that will make me happy; that having those washboard abs would bring me friends that would in turn make me a popular, happy, more lovable person. It’s not always the case.
Whether said idol is Chris Hemsworth or a fitness influencer who finds his triceps far more interesting than his personal relationships, Middle Eastern politics and just about everything else for that matter.
Nowadays, we scroll through social media to look for that guidance or motivation from wellness influencers, which is fine, but it does make you wonder why they are so serious about a topic that’s supposed to make us feel, well, WELL! Sure, a lot of these guys are personal trainers and social media is their way of marketing their business, but looking after our wellness surely needs to be a bit more fun and a little less eye-roll inducing?
I remember thinking that will make me happy; that having those washboard abs would bring me friends that would in turn make me a popular, happy, more lovable person. It’s not always the case.
So how can we make fitness fun? How can nutrition be more than batch-made vegetation in tupperware? Let’s have a look…
- Buddy up: Get yourself a gym buddy and make it a social activity. Now, don’t be those guys who just sit and chat on equipment, because you will most definitely lose friends, but you can spur each other on. A great, fun class is always a Strongman Class. It is literally a playground full sleds to push, things to carry, tires to flip and that style of exercising, metabolic conditioning can help build muscle AND keep you trim. With a buddy, it’s a lot of fun. Honest.
- New challenges: Set yourself a goal, maybe a left field one such as a Spartan Race, or Tough Mudder? You can enlist a group of friends and take the challenge together while setting fitness goals or sessions while you work up to the big day!
- Love yourself: Sure, wellness influencers love a flex but flexing between sets, called Intra-set flexing, can help you control your muscles and tap in to their strength for the next set. Also, if you have a buddy then why not snap for social and be THOSE guys?! Bro time is allowed and yes, I can’t believe I wrote the term “bro time“ either, but showing off that progress can be so encouraging. Love your results!
- Taking stock of your network: Relationships are what make us human. Our ability to create a connection between two people is beautiful and negative connections can actually have more of an ill affect than we realise. I’m not saying it’s time to cut out people who make you feel like crap, or perhaps I am, but if someone puts you down or makes you feel inadequate then be straight with them. Tell them. People can misuse “banter” as an excuse for bad humour and often at someone’s expense. Don’t let that be you.
- Treat yourself! Buying new gear to wear at the gym can help to change things up, motivate you, and get you in the zone. If you feel good about yourself, your workout will feel more fun!
- Eat differently: We all cook the same thing, week in, week out, and it’s down to busy schedules. Why not mix up classic recipes with different ingredients? Using turkey mince, for example, cuts down on your red meat intake when using it to make spaghetti bolognese. And it’s high in protein, so… gains!
Little changes and influences can enhance our overall wellbeing. Motivation and positivity comes from enjoying something because then… weirdly…we want to do it again and again. I feel it’s a bit of a no-brainer, and that’s what life should be about, right? Looking after our bodies with exercise, nutrition and mental health can actually be an enjoyable task.