The Great Fitness Dilemma

Finding Exercise That You Like to Do Is the Biggest Challenge

By , Columnist
I don't love yoga. And, quite frankly, I can also live without running, aerobics, hybrid workouts, and any weight room routine that involves single joint exercises and takes longer than 30 minutes to complete.

There, I said it. The world did not end, the sun is still shining, and all is still well in my world. I can be a fitness instructor and personally dislike doing and teaching several forms of exercise.

I do not make these statements lightly. For many years I tried to love yoga. I studied with some of the top Iyengar, Bikram, Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Bikram, and Kundalini teachers out there, many of whom are still close friends and associates. Some styles and classes went down better than others, but still didn't captivate me.

Friends kept at me. "But Lynda, how could you of all people not love yoga? You love Pilates, you love reiki and meditation, you love to move and stretch, and you have so many fabulous yoga teacher friends and colleagues. Maybe you just haven't found the right teacher, or style, or class."

You know, I have to assume that if Rodnee Yee, David Swenson, Elena Brower, Joan White, and others haven't drawn me in yet, it's probably not going to happen. By the same token I have had marathoners try to take me out for long distance runs (hated it), and I have suffered through yawningly boring weight room sessions with Olympic lifters (hated it). Group aerobics and hybrid classes just annoy me.

And that's okay. I have exercise that I enjoy doing and teaching, and am always open to trying new things to expand my horizons. For me Pilates, kettlebells, TRX, and hi intensity cardio sprints work well.

Why should we all enjoy the same forms of exercise? And why do we as exercise instructors automatically assume that our way is the best way? When I first started teaching Pilates I could never understand why some people didn't like it. Now I encourage all of my clients to find ways of exercising that they do like, and I try not to be offended if my favorites are not their favorites. More importantly, when their favorites are different I refer them to a good teacher who can train them in what they enjoy doing.

What are your favorite and least favorite forms of fitness?

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NYC resident Lynda Lippin is a world-renowned Pilates, Fitness, and Reiki instructor with nearly 25 years of experience. She is also an accomplished writer and a former Philosophy professor. In her Featured Column, Lynda will lead you on a path towards Fitness Sanity. Got Questions? Want Lynda to checkā€¦

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