It’s finally spring. Leaving the treadmill in the basement, I return to the countless pleasures of running outdoors. After meditating, the first thing I do in the morning is strap on my silver Asics and head out with the dog for a lap around Cedar Lake. The budding trees, the fresh air, the reflection of the sun on the water—I relish every luscious detail.
Afterward, the post-exercise glow lasts the whole day. Starting the day with exercise helps prime my body and spirit for a more relaxing, productive, and, yes, happier day. All the subjects in my book Full Heart Living incorporate exercise into their lives because, like me, they know it soothes their nerves and boosts their mood.
If exercise is so good for us, why do people hate it? On good days, many people see exercise as a chore to check off their to-do list. On bad days, exercise gets cancelled at the last minute—if it makes the to-do list at all.
What’s going on here? Why the reluctance to exercise? Is this just a bad habit or something deeper?
I’ve found it’s something deeper. And that something is often confusion between fitness and self-care.