Fitness Tips I Learned from my Dogs: Have Fun
The fitness industry is huge. As reported on USNews.com, MarketData Enterprises estimates that Americans spend over $60 billion each year trying to lose weight and stay in shape. It seems that people are constantly looking for help when it comes to getting or staying fit. Many of us will consult with experts or hire personal trainers to help us get more consistent with our training or to help us break through plateaus.
Even though I know a lot about fitness from my many years of training, researching, and experimenting, I am always ready and willing to learn new techniques and approaches that can help me stay fit. Recently, I realized that I can actually learn many valuable fitness tips and lessons simply by observing my dogs. Every dog that I have had during my adult life has been a workout partner and each of them has, perhaps unwittingly, provided me with fitness advice via their actions.
Well, it is about time that I start to take advantage of this doggy wisdom! Starting today, I am beginning a short series that will highlight some of the fantastic fitness tips that I have learned from my dogs over the years. These tips can help both humans and canines improve their overall fitness and very likely make it easier to stick with a regular fitness program. Who would have thought that your dog can also be your own personal trainer?
Fitness Tips I Learned from my Dogs: #1 Have Fun
The first tip that I have learned from my dogs is that one of the easiest ways to be consistent with your workouts is to make sure that you are having fun while exercising. For exercise-a-holics like me, this is often not an issue. But many people dread their workouts and think of them as if they are a chore, which increases the chances of skipping a workout or simply going through the motions.
Yet, my dogs have always been “ready and raring to go” when it comes to doing physical activities with their humans and they inevitably seem to have lots of fun while doing it! Our Sweet Sally Brown was a great example of this. She turned virtually every workout into a game, whether it meant incorporating chase, hide and seek, or “I am going to run away and find dead animal carcasses to eat”, she always had fun while we were exercising together.
Here are some tips to help make your workouts more fun:
- Workout with your dog. Doh! This goes without saying, but any workout is more fun when you do it with your dog.
- Use intermittent games to reduce the monotony. This was Sally’s specialty. Make it yours when exercising with your dog or by yourself. Introduce little games into the mix and you will find that the time will just fly by.
- Workout with friends. This was another strategy of Sally’s. She absolutely loved running with her friends and seemed to tolerate our longer runs more easily when she was running with her “pack”. Try the same thing for yourself by joining a running group or a bootcamp. The camaraderie will help you push through the workout and the interactions with your friends during the workout can help dull the ‘pain’.
Of course, having fun is a part of our theme for K9Kamp Backyard Fitness Games. In fact, it is really the entire point of K9Kamp: workout with your dog in any way you can think of, given your physical or space limitations. And have lots of fun while keeping yourself and your pets in shape.