For many people, finding the drive to exercise can be difficult, especially if you don’t enjoy exercise or haven’t exercised in a while. But don’t fret! There are many ways to exercise that don’t involve a sweaty gym or pounding the pavements for a run, and that sometimes, really don’t feel like exercise at all! Trick your body and mind and try these great exercise ideas for fitness phobes.


Exercise ideas for fitness phobes

1. Get walking

Walking is a very effective exercise, which not only costs nothing but is a big calorie burner once you get started. Walking for a purpose rather than for exercise will make it much less of a chore and will count towards your recommended daily physical activity quota too. Walking to work is one way to get in some daily exercise, and be kinder to the environment too. Walking for an hour can burn up to 400 calories so if you can walk to or from work, or take a stroll during your lunch hour, you’ll up your fitness in no time.


2. Volunteer

If you sit at a desk all day, the chances are your work doesn’t offer much physical exercise. Older generations were more likely to work outdoors or in roles which didn’t offer much time for sitting down. By getting involved in some projects, such as helping out at a community garden/allotment, walking dogs, helping to build something and other volunteer projects, you can enjoy the benefits of some physical activity as well as helping others.


3. Make it fun

If you can be swayed into going to the gym or going for a run, but need a bit of encouragement, there are some ways to make it more fun. There’s some fantastic apps available, for example, which can be used in conjunction with exercise to make it more thrilling. Zombies, Run!, for example features some great storytelling which advances as you run, helping to divert your brain away from exercise. You could also try the Superhero Workout in which you play the superhero role as you exercise.


4. Exercise doesn’t have to be heavy

Whilst the thought of exercise usually brings images of weight training, long distance running and hardcore circuits to mind, you don’t have to overexert yourself in order to exercise. Yoga and pilates for example are effective exercises which help improve balance, posture and flexibility, without the need for a challenging workout. As meditative forms of exercise they can also help to boost your mental health, making them a more enjoyable form of exercise.


5. Play

When you were a child, running around with your friends was an easy way to burn off energy and helped to keep you fit. Why can’t you do the same as an adult? Play with your children, your pets or arrange group activities with your friends (Frisbee, hiking, etc) which can help you enjoy that easy form of exercise without having to slog it out on a bike or treadmill.

Finding the motivation to exercise for fitness phobes can be difficult, but it’s all about finding something you can enjoy that helps you forget that you’re exercising to make it less daunting. If you need some ideas for some low-impact exercise to help you find your perfect exercise fit, this great article from NHS Choices has a broad range of options. Enjoy finding the right exercise for you and look forward to a healthier start to 2017.