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Exercise

Creating a lighter, healthier you is a multi-step process. One of the most important steps, and the main focus of this section, is exercise. Here we explore everything from the benefits of exercise to how much and how often it is necessary to promote weight loss.

10 Ways to Make Exercise Fun

Gone are the days of boring and standard workout routines. Give these 10 fun workout ideas a try when dread is high and motivation is low!

10 Ways to Make Exercise Fun


Exercise should be something that is stress-relieving and enjoyable. Often people think exercise has to look a certain way, including going to a gym or starting a running program. However, the best exercise program is one that is enjoyable to you.

So forget boring, forced workouts and say hello to exercises that will put a smile on your face! Try these 10 workout ideas today to make fitness much more fun.

How to Make Exercising More Enjoyable

Feel "forced" to workout during that weight loss journey? Tired of the monotony of a gym routine? Not anymore!

Give these 10 workout ideas to make exercising enjoyable no matter the fitness level!

1. Have a Workout Buddy

Exercising with a friend or family member not only can make exercise more enjoyable, but it can offer encouragement, accountability, and motivation. Working out with someone close will not only benefit you, but it will benefit your counterpart as well.

Exercising with a workout buddy could simply mean meeting a friend to walk, take a class, or start a weight lifting program together. Doing something you enjoy together will double the fun!

2. Workout with a Trainer

Especially if new to the workout scene, hiring a personal trainer can be valuable assistance and spark interest in exercise.

Working out with a trainer takes the guesswork out of what exercises to do while offering more variety, challenge, and fun to a routine. A trainer's motivation and knowledge can fuel personal motivation and success to reach those health goals.

Right now, many trainers and fitness clubs now offer virtual options for at-home workouts.

3. Take a Class

If working out with a trainer seems a little intimidating, consider joining a fitness class for fun workouts. There are many virtual and in-person ways to workout with larger crowds while still focusing on your own workout.

Classes can offer a unique variety for exercising, too. These may include a dance workout such as hip hop or barre-inspired. Other fun options include yoga, indoor cycling, and high-intensity focused workouts.

Instructors still offer guidance and motivation for exercising. It also adds in an extra layer of fun knowing you are working out with other people whether virtually or in person.

4. Join an Online Exercise Challenge

Joining an online exercise challenge can be a fun way to participate in a friendly competition against yourself and others. Many online fitness challenges also raise money for charitable organizations which can offer additional incentives and motivation.

Fitness challenges can vary just like class options ranging from walking, running, cycling, steps or general minutes spent exercising.

5. Get Outside

Physical activity provides many health benefits, but exercising outside adds even more.

Exercising outside may add an extra dose of fun and motivation, especially for those spending most of the day inside working. Getting outside for exercise has been shown to help improve mood, enhance self-esteem, and reduce the risk of depression.

Reap the benefits of exercising outside by walking, running, cycling, yoga, strength training, dancing, or participating in adult team sports. Even a quick full-body workout outdoors can be helpful!

6. Set a Reward

The physical and mental gains from regular exercise are significant and undeniable. However, sometimes other incentives are just what it takes to adhere to fitness plans.

Treat yourself when meeting fitness goals, whether short-term or quite lofty. Rewards can come in all forms and sizes, including:

• Taking a well-earned nap
• Visiting a special place or scheduling a vacation
• Swapping out marathon training with a movie marathon
• Purchasing new attire

Regardless of the reward, work hard towards it while relishing all that is accomplished!

7. Train for a Competition

Giving yourself something to train for can add not only fun but the extra motivation to your exercise routine. Training for a competition may mean walking or running a 5K, doing a CrossFit competition, or joining a martial arts program.

Many competition based exercises will also offer a training plan. For example, this couch to 5K training plan offers a workout routine to get you ready for a 5K.

Training for a competition may seem challenging, but completing your competition may get you hooked to continue training.

8. Try Something New

Variety is the spice of life, and adding variety to your workouts can help keep your exercise routine enjoyable and fun.

Instead of doing the same type of exercise, add in something new periodically. This could be either a variance in exercise intensity, duration, or trying a new exercise you normally would not do.

You may love the variety or at least find new satisfaction and enjoyment with a change in your exercise program.

9. Shorten the Workout

Exercising for even 5 to 10 minutes at a time can be beneficial. Even if it is a stretch or walk break throughout the workday, breaking up sitting time is a good thing.

The idea of working out at least 30 minutes may seem daunting some days. However, adding in 10-minute bursts of exercise at a time throughout the day may add enjoyment and confidence you can get exercise in.

If not so eager to exercise, start with 10 minutes. This could be a 10-minute bodyweight routine at home, walk outdoors, or an online workout video to follow along with.

If you want to keep going, do it. If not, congratulate yourself on getting in 10 minutes even when you did not want to!

10. Listen to Music or a Podcast

Start with a song or two of motivating and exciting music to fuel your next workout. Working out with music can help set the tempo for an effective workout while powering through difficult weight lifting sessions.

If stimulating the brain with a podcast, audiobook, or news is more appealing, listen to these while exercising to make it more enjoyable.

If exercising outside, UNplugging may be enjoyable. It could be refreshing to simply tune into the nature around you while you move your body. Try to focus on the wind, birds, or other nature noises that so easily can get tuned out.

Sydney Lappe's Photo
Written By Sydney Lappe, MS, RDN. Published on November 07, 2012. Updated on December 04, 2020.

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