Ask Mathews: Why it’s Alright to Hate Going to the Gym

Have you ever felt like the gym might not be the perfect place for you? Have you ever felt suffocated by the artificial environment, or like you would rather be doing anything else in the world than having to spend another second on the elliptical? Don’t worry, it’s okay, and you’re not alone.

Let’s face it, the gym is not the ideal training environment for everyone, after all, we are all unique and different, so why should you abide by someone else’s preconceived notions of right or wrong. It is perfectly alright to hate going to the gym, even professional athletes lose their collective minds to the monotony of the iron jungle, but unlike them, you are free to explore the fitness world as you see fit. Here is why it’s okay to hate going to the gym and what you can do about it.

It can get boring as hell

The monotonous training regimes issued out by your average, off-the-conveyor-belt trainers can quickly become so boring and tedious, you are bound to develop a sort of resentment for the gym type of training. Some recover from this by finding a workout style that suits them better, but the vast majority never step foot in the iron temple again.

Nor should you. Life is too short to waste it curling away a 7,5kg dumbbell into infinity, while losing your mind and patience in the process. Not to mention that the gym can be a filthy, testosterone-filled macho cave where all the machines are taken and the big guys are grunting, snorting, and gushing out protein farts that are probably the dominant culprit in the global warming crisis. Who needs that? There are plenty of other ways to get and remain fit.

But you need to exercise

The gym is most certainly not the be-all-end-all of fitness, however it does boast one major advantage over other forms of training: consistency. Even if you don’t want to go work out, you will. Why? Because you’ve paid an astronomical sum for a month’s worth of training sessions and you are sure as hell not going to let it all go to waste. The same cannot be said for outdoor training.

That is why, when you do decide to ditch the gym and take your workout regime to the great outdoors, you need to be sure you have the motivation and persistence in you to push through the lazy days and stick to your training schedule. Staying consistent with your training is not always easy, so make sure you find your guiding star, and follow it.

Find a fun alternative

Luckily for you, the world is one giant gym, and it can be your very own playground. Not only is outdoor training immensely beneficial for your physical and mental health, it can put you in a completely different state of mind, allowing you to get in touch with your inner child and bring it back to life.

Why would you want to stare at your reflection in the gym mirror while your curl a dumbbell when you can stare at the trees, the people, the architecture and enjoy a different scenery every time you go outside? Plus, there are plenty of things you can do to keep monotony at bay.

So, go running, jumping, mountain climbing, cycling, or find some cool skateboard decks and roll your workouts through the city streets and parks. The possibilities are endless, you just need to embrace life and leave the gym to those who like that sort of thing – you’re a much different kind of spirit.

The fitness industry has turned the concept of the gym into a religion, one that is oppressive and that you need to be a part of if you ever plan to reach your goals. That is simply not true. Keep these observations in mind, embrace the freedom of life, put a smile on that face, and pave the road to lifelong health and well being by being unique.

Mathews McGarry, Associate Editor

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