It’s with great pleasure that we re-introduce to you Pascal and Nic of Équilibre. This awesome duo were the subject of a Q&A back here where we found out all about their business. They represent a meeting of the foodie and the fitness guru, and advocate healthy living and well being without deprivation or any of the usual, feared features of exercise programs. They’re joining us this month to help get us motivated to eat well and stay active, which is especially needed as the weather turns cool and the rain sets in! Check back next Friday for more from the Équilibre duo.
Lost your exercise mojo? Let us help you find it and keep it!
So you’re tired, stressed, work long hours, have kids to look after, meals to cook and commitments to meet – welcome to the club! How on earth do we ever find the time to fit in exercise, let alone muster up the motivation to actually want to go out and do it?
Being in the fitness game, it’s something Pascal gets asked all the time – “Help! I seem to have lost my exercise mojo… how do I get it back?”
The term mojo comes from African American hoodoo and refers to a ‘magical bag of charms’. Quite appropriate really, considering our eternal search for a magical solution to good health and fitness, usually in the form of a pill, drink, supplement, wonder food or mail order exercise machine! The reality is, there are no easy, quick fix solutions (despite the ever growing number of people and businesses making squillions out of trying to convince you otherwise!)
There’s no easy way. If there were, I would have bought it. And believe me,
it would be one of my favourite things! (Oprah Winfrey, O Magazine, Feb 2005)
So, what alternative kinds of ‘magic’ can we put into our little bags in order to capture our mojo and keep it humming? Here are some thoughts and suggestions from our own experience to help you along.
1. Find some quiet time, work out what it is that ‘lights you up’ and set a goal that reflects it. Is it completing a marathon, your first triathlon, climbing Mt Everest or simply being able to run around the park with your kids? Perhaps, like Nic, it’s the promise of some much-needed alone time for you to think clearly or just ‘be’. Create a vision of it and get excited – you’re going to need to hold on to that feeling.
2. Our individual motivations are exactly that – unique to us. What spurs one person on to run their first 5km may not even get the next person out of bed. When Pascal left school, he had a dream of becoming a professional golfer. He ate, slept and breathed golf, and couldn’t wait for the sun to come up so that he could head out on to the course to practice. In more recent years, he’s kept his mojo alive by training for Ironman triathlons. With a race to prepare for, he is focused and motivated and would never allow early morning rises, bad weather or lack of sleep to get in the way of his training regime.
3. Don’t make your goal about weight loss. If that’s your prime motivation for exercise, we guarantee that you will lose it very quickly if you don’t get the results you are hoping for immediately, and will soon start seeking your magic elsewhere (most likely in the comfort of the biscuit tin!)
Pascal competing in the 2010 Busselton Ironman.
4. Have you heard the saying that most races are run in the head? Don’t let negative self-talk take over and stamp out your mojo. Be your own cheerleader and keep telling yourself that you CAN do it, you ARE good enough, strong enough and that you deserve the rewards.
5. Similarly, watch your language. If you find yourself complaining or making excuses, put a stop to it. Too hot, too cold, too wet, too early, too late, too tired, too hard (oh yes, we’ve heard them all.) ‘If only I had more time’ ‘If only I was younger, older, fitter, slimmer…’ (Or, our personal favourite, ‘I don’t like to sweat’!) If you’re reading this, you’re probably lucky enough to be living in Perth – a city with amazing, exercise-friendly conditions and facilities, as well as year-round good weather – so there goes most of your excuses right away (Pascal had good reason to move here from Melbourne, you see!)
6. Don’t expect overnight miracles and don’t push yourself too hard, too fast. You need to be able to get up and do it all again the next day and being injured or too sore quickly puts a stop to it.
7. Keep a diary or log. You will find it inspiring to look back on your progress and see how much you have improved over time. If you’re training for a goal, it’s the journey, rather than the destination that matters most, so be sure to record and reflect on it.
8. Surround yourself with active and inspiring people. Sign up for an inexpensive course like our Fitness for Foodies program that provides a weekly action plan of structured exercise, as well as inspiration for making changes in other areas of your life.
9. Plan and do whatever it takes to get organised – if that means going to bed earlier or arranging extra babysitting for the kids – then do it!
Once you recognise the magic of exercise and what it can do for your body, mind and spirit, it becomes much easier to keep rekindling your mojo. Nic hasn’t always been a fan of exercise, but over the years she has come to embrace it as part of her life. Even with a new baby and toddler to care for, a severe lack of sleep and a business to run, she still knows that the days she can squeeze in some form of exercise will mean more energy, an optimistic frame of mind and a stronger feeling body. That knowledge can be a powerful thing, and it’s what keeps you coming back for more on a consistent basis.
If you decide to hang about and wait for your mojo to turn up, you might be waiting for a very long time! The real secret? Don’t wait, just get out there and do it – silence the voices in your head for long enough to get your shoes on and get out the door, drive to that class, or hop on your treadmill. Life rewards action, so let’s get moving and create our own magic! Pascal and Nic.
Head to the Équilibre website for more information on their programs and to sign up!