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Exercise

LucasM

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What do INTP's (in general, and specific) think of the notion of exercise?

Now I don't go to the gym, for one; I am too unscheduled and kinda find the whole notion a bit too 'structured' for my tastes. That is not too say I am against exercise, I enjoy it. Runs, swims, pushups, situps, chin-ups, etc...
Not that I exercise much, it is a mood thing, but getting slowly more serious (way better than a year ago for instance though that is not saying much). But I find it builds self-confidence. Thus any suggestions are good too.
 

cheese

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I think, as with many things, that it's a very good idea and makes a lot of sense. This intellectual acknowledgement doesn't translate into action however. I think this is quite common with INTPs.

Does it build self-confidence because of the way your body changes, or because of the chemicals released during exercise?
 

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As a teenager I exercised daily. Mainly weight training. After college though, I took occasional jobs that were labor intensive and substituted that for exercise. Until my back blew up that is. Now I get very little except for PT.
 

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I know I should exercise, but I don't. Part of it is what you said, cheese, the intellectual acknowledgement not translating into action, but part is the fact that I don't see that I'll really accomplish anything by it that really matters for me. I'm not fit, but I'm not unhealthy either, and I don't want to go to a gym (where people can look at me). The only other option really available to me is walking, and I space out so quickly that it just turns into a useless gentle amble within minutes. That and where I live, you could walk for hours and still not get anywhere but the tiny corner shop. :p I'd rather stay in and post on forums and play Disgaea.
 

LucasM

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Does it build self-confidence because of the way your body changes, or because of the chemicals released during exercise?

Because I know I am doing something about my physical care, it builds self confidence. Try it. Same with showering.

Thus, it is a positive experience.

Sure, it is hard to explain. Thus try it.
 

Sugarpop

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I think the way to remedy the monotony of exercise is to make it a set of many very different activities, always including new things. I've tried lifting weights and jogging, but the habit never lasts long enough.
 

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Exercise is a good investment in your future. I don't exercise much myself, though. I walk about one hour every now and then. I used to exercise frequently before.
 

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There was an 8 month period last year where I ran about 5 days a week, but now I am only running 3 times a week. I do not mind running as a form of exercise because it allows me some time to recharge mentally. I have tried on numerous occasions to add weight lifting to my exercise plan, but I am never able to stick to it.
 

FF

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Finding time is hardest thing for me. I try to exercise twice a week regularly, though. Just gym workouts like running, crunches, various weight machines, stretches...things like that...

And every now and then, when I have time, I enjoy tennis and swimming. :)
 

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I hardly ever exercise. I just don't like doing things for the sake of a workout. I like running and walking to different places, I like playing sports when I have the chance, but I can't bring myself to do physically strenuous things as part of a workout.

I'm best off having a healthy lifestyle, walking/biking to school and work, eating healthy and playing sports in my downtime. Then I don't have to make time for exercise.
 

truthseeker72

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Exercise has consistently provided me fulfillment for more than twenty years. I have been weight training since I was sixteen, and in the past eight years, I have incorporated regular cardio sessions and a strict, bodybuilding diet . I can write a book extoling the virtues of fitness, but I'll just say here that exercise provides me with a sense of control like nothing else in life, including work, relationships, and yes, even intellectual pursuits (which I enjoy immensely). With fitness, I actually see a direct link between my effort and planning, and the results I achieve. How many other endeavors in life can you say that about? I just got laid off from my job yesterday (I work as a litigation attorney). My boss told me that my work product was outstanding, and that my clients and co-workers all liked me, but becuase my clients didn't pay enough of their fees (the recession has hit SW Florida particularly hard) the firm couldn't justify keeping me. Three years of hard work and loyalty meant nothing in the end. Likewise, in my relationships with women, I often sensed that the more emotion I invested in it, the worse they treated me!

The bottom line is that with exercise, you get back what you put in. And no, there is no inherent contradiction in being a muscular INTP. Intellect and physical strenth actually complement each other.
 

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^How did you do it? I totally understand the correlation between physical and mental fitness, but I just don't get motivated enough. Perhaps it's hard for me because it's too cold to run, no fitness equipment, and no gym membership, but I really want to be physically fit because it just makes my life easier, like you described.

And sorry about your being laid off.
 

bdubs

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Running several times a week has been easy for me because my family owns a treadmill and there is a large gym located about 200 yards from my dorm room. I find running can be somewhat relaxing. It can also help me unwind if I have had a difficult day. (I'm one of the few I know who chooses to run in the late evening)
 

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Does anyone know how to get a habit of exercise going, keep it and have fun with it? I suppose variety should be emphasized. Any ideas?
 

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At the risk of sounding like some cheesy motivational speaker, you really do need to establish concrete fitness goals. An amorphous goal like "getting in shape" will keep you motivated for about five days. Whether it's adding an inch of muscle to your arms, or losing two pant sizes, the goal needs to be tangible and achievable. Once you pinpoint your goal, arm yourself with knowledge. I highly recommend bodybuilding.com as a informational source. The site caters not just to bodybuilders, but all men, women and teens who want to change their bodies.
Then, create a plan of attack, and stay true to it. Consistency and intensity of effort will always yield results. Obviously, there are a lot of other considerations involved, but those are the essential points to remember.

I appreciate the thoughts about my job situation. The good news is that a former employer of mine wants me back. I start at my old "new" firm on Monday.
 

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It's just kind of fuzzy for me as my weight is healthy and I don't need a 6 pack. I just want to have the energy to do anything I want, be it a 10k or a day of sports, or whatever.
 

Elkrim

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*Sigh* I recently moved to downtown Los Angeles, a horrible, horrible place for leisure biking, from Eugene Oregon, where you can get about anywhere without leaving trails or bike lanes so long as you didn't mind the hills - I really enjoyed jumping on my bike when I was feeling stressed and just picking a direction and going. Without the beautiful forestland to bike through, though, my exercise has dropped to the ten minutes it takes to get to class. So depressing.

I did at least manage to get my old rollerblades down here, which is much more of a workout, but I haven't gotten around to replacing the brakes. :(
 

LucasM

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*Sigh* I recently moved to downtown Los Angeles, a horrible, horrible place for leisure biking, from Eugene Oregon, where you can get about anywhere without leaving trails or bike lanes so long as you didn't mind the hills - I really enjoyed jumping on my bike when I was feeling stressed and just picking a direction and going. Without the beautiful forestland to bike through, though, my exercise has dropped to the ten minutes it takes to get to class. So depressing.

I did at least manage to get my old rollerblades down here, which is much more of a workout, but I haven't gotten around to replacing the brakes. :(

I agree totally. Riding downtown Calgary with a bike is too scary for me.
 

cheese

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Sagewolf:
Yes I understand. The most important benefit for me would be continued health into old age (or even getting old at all) and therefore continued independence. These are not immediately visible benefits and so more difficult to weigh when considering exercise.
(What a place to live! Move somewhere fun!)

LucasM: !!!
Of course I've tried exercise! On numerous occasions! And again, there is the intellectual acknowledgement that it makes me feel good after and builds self-confidence etc, but my immediate physical fatigue and general disinclination to commence movement (for what seems like the sake of movement, as Ermine mentioned) overcome rational argument. When I DO take that first step, however, I find it quite satisfying.
I think the underlying problem is discipline, and its lack shows in all areas of my life.

Also, I walk about 30-50 minutes daily in a hilly area, to get around.

Question: Is the above an example of an irrational decision?
Shouldn't T-types be the most disciplined people around, and Fs the least?

T-person:
- Exercise is necessary for me to be healthy.
- Being healthy helps me accomplish goals.
Therefore I should exercise
- I should exercise
Therefore I exercise.

How does this come in?
- I don't feel like exercising dammit!
Therefore I don't exercise.

Why DON'T the intellectual conclusions translate into the physical world of action? Isn't that anti-T?

Or is it the value we place on things:
- I value comfort and potato chips more than health.
Therefore I don't exercise.
even though you know ultimately your comfort will be increased with exercise? Though I suppose you could qualify that comfort to mean immediate comfort.

I'm not very clear on the T/F dichotomy - all decisions are made with values, the only difference being T-types decide with personal valuations regarding goals, and F-types adhere to "universal standards" of good/evil.

But this can't be right, since it suggests that Ts are amoral/selfish and Fs are all goody, but that isn't the case! unless a lot of people are mistyping.

(Sorry should this be posted somewhere else? If so just tell me and I'll redo it :))
 

Sugarpop

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Sagewolf:
Yes I understand. The most important benefit for me would be continued health into old age (or even getting old at all) and therefore continued independence. These are not immediately visible benefits and so more difficult to weigh when considering exercise.
(What a place to live! Move somewhere fun!)

LucasM: !!!
Of course I've tried exercise! On numerous occasions! And again, there is the intellectual acknowledgement that it makes me feel good after and builds self-confidence etc, but my immediate physical fatigue and general disinclination to commence movement (for what seems like the sake of movement, as Ermine mentioned) overcome rational argument. When I DO take that first step, however, I find it quite satisfying.
I think the underlying problem is discipline, and its lack shows in all areas of my life.

Also, I walk about 30-50 minutes daily in a hilly area, to get around.

Question: Is the above an example of an irrational decision?
Shouldn't T-types be the most disciplined people around, and Fs the least?

T-person:
- Exercise is necessary for me to be healthy.
- Being healthy helps me accomplish goals.
Therefore I should exercise
- I should exercise
Therefore I exercise.

How does this come in?
- I don't feel like exercising dammit!
Therefore I don't exercise.

Why DON'T the intellectual conclusions translate into the physical world of action? Isn't that anti-T?

Or is it the value we place on things:
- I value comfort and potato chips more than health.
Therefore I don't exercise.
even though you know ultimately your comfort will be increased with exercise? Though I suppose you could qualify that comfort to mean immediate comfort.

I'm not very clear on the T/F dichotomy - all decisions are made with values, the only difference being T-types decide with personal valuations regarding goals, and F-types adhere to "universal standards" of good/evil.

But this can't be right, since it suggests that Ts are amoral/selfish and Fs are all goody, but that isn't the case! unless a lot of people are mistyping.

(Sorry should this be posted somewhere else? If so just tell me and I'll redo it :))

P.
 

truthseeker72

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Your goal doesn't necessarily have to include visual changes to your body. You mentioned running a 10K; find one in your area, mark that date on your calendar, and use that as your motivation. While exercise undeniably makes us healthier, I find that most people will not push past the pain barrier by telling themselves "I'm going to live 4.7 years more if I do this regularly!" The goal needs to be more immediate and tangible.

On another note, I've come to realize that pursuing any type of goal requires more than just the intellectual acknowledgement of its worthiness. Even though as INTP's we champion reason and logic, we also need passion to succeed. For example, I'm lousy at saving and managing money, even though I fully understand the need for smart money management (especially these days). I just can't muster the energy to dutifully track where my money goes. Likewise, I've met dozens of people who have said "I know I should exercise but . . . " Trust me, once you start seeing and feeling the results from consistent exercise, the passion will emerge. You just need to overcome that initial resistance to leaving your comfort zone.
 

truthseeker72

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Your goal doesn't necessarily have to include visual changes to your body. You mentioned running a 10K; find one in your area, mark that date on your calendar, and use that as your motivation. While exercise undeniably makes us healthier, I find that most people will not push past the pain barrier by telling themselves "I'm going to live 4.7 years more if I do this regularly!" The goal needs to be more immediate and tangible.

On another note, I've come to realize that pursuing any type of goal requires more than just the intellectual acknowledgement of its worthiness. Even though as INTP's we champion reason and logic, we also need passion to succeed. For example, I'm lousy at saving and managing money, even though I fully understand the need for smart money management (especially these days). I just can't muster the energy to dutifully track where my money goes. Likewise, I've met dozens of people who have said "I know I should exercise but . . . " Trust me, once you start seeing and feeling the results from consistent exercise, the passion will emerge. You just need to overcome that initial resistance to leaving your comfort zone.
 

cheese

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^ Yes, I agree. My problem is leaving my comfort zone and staying out. Motivation in general is something I have major difficulties with.

Sugarpop:
I initially thought that was the answer as well, but it seems too simple and doesn't answer all my questions, though it is true that an extraverted P preference would result in more input than output. My main issue is how one really tells between an F and a T. I haven't thought about it enough yet so I'll repost in the proper sub-forum another day when I'm ready.
 

sagewolf

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As to the F/T thing: When it comes to processes, our bodies are actually in the outside world, as is any action we take regarding exercise (i.e., it's not confined to our minds). So we're not actually making the decision with our Ti, which is introverted (and more developed in an NTP) but with our Fe (which is extraverted and generally far less developed than our Ti). So we're making the decision with a process we generally don't like using much and which is far more likely to come out with an immature decision. Combine that with our Ne, which isn't very enthusiastic about concrete things like exercise and physical effort, and the we begin to feel like exercise is pure drudgery.

There's a very good explanation of the T/F differences here (which I found through a thread on this forum, thank you Lucas M) and there are decent explanations of the different functions at cognitiveprocesses.com . Generally, Thinking is a decision making process which seeks to objectify a situation and view it logically; Feeling is the one that deals with values (core or societal, depending on Fi or Fe).
 

cheese

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^ Thanks, that's helpful. I still have some questions but I'll formulate them properly first before drawing anyone else in.

I've checked out cognitiveprocesses.com before - while it did help a little it also confused me and made me doubt my type even more. This is probably good in the long run. Clears away the mental dross.

Thanks for the link!


*edit
Just had a look at the link, and aha! It seems I'm on the right track with something!
I'll be back.
 

sagewolf

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Hah, cognitiveprocesses confuses me too, sometimes; I have to keep checking the explanations in response to certain questions, although I have a general idea of how each process works (except Te).

And just because you don't have the exact order of TiNeSiFe doesn't mean you're not an INTP; My order is, I think, closer to TiNeFeSi, and I remember reading at one point here than someone had very developed Ni. The processes are a lot more helpful when it comes to understanding type theory and personal preferences/behaviour anyway, so I pay more attention to them than to the four-letter code. :o
 

cheese

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Now THAT'S helpful! :) Thanks a bunch, because I'm actually having a very distressing and frustrating time trying to type myself (not that it matters, I know), and I keep getting terrified that I'm an INFP - I'm borderline on everything except P, so it's possible.
But I had another look at cognitiveprocesses, and honestly Ti hit me pretty hard, so at least that's a step forward. My preferences would probably be TiFeTeFi, interspersing Ns and Ss at arbitrary points :D though i suspect this is cheating.

I find the descriptions of the Perceiving functions a little unclear. It'd be nicer if they were more concrete.
 

echoplex

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I think it's a very rational thing to do (to put it in INTP terms :))

I like to run, do pushups, lift weights, I stretch alot, and I love playing basketball. However, like the OP, there's not much structure to what I do. I can't say I have a "routine."
 

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The forms of exercise I most often participate in are walking/hiking, jogging, and weight lifting. They seem to work well for me when I keep at them.

To keep myself exercising, I found that getting a gym membership and a personal trainer was well worth the money. I do not like missing or being late for appointments when other people are involved, and I'm good at keeping the the few commitments I tend to make. When I don't set certain times in which I force myself to exercise, I have to rely on spontaneously deciding to exercise in my free time, which doesn't happen very often. I prefer to do the things I want to do (like think, ponder, philosophize) in my free time, but for me free time is very much about quality over quantity, so I'm not too terribly concerned about giving a little bit of it up for the purposes of feeling good and staying (or becoming) fit.
 
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I think that any 8 combination of the cognitive processes should be possible to allow a higher number of types. Your type would be defined on the order of all 8 cognitive processes. The current sysystem is rigid (extroverted thinking or introverted thinking - introverted intuition or extroverted intuition, etc), but certainly logical.
 
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I have always started excercise programs and then lost motivation within the first couple weeks. What really helped me was to get a personal trainer. If you can find personal training that you can afford (and you have a good trainer), you will be able to do more because someone else will expect you to be there 3 times a week, and you will lose money if you don't go. It's not just your own internal dialog deciding whether or not you should work out today.

The biggest thing it probably did for me though, was to allow me to skip the step of having to design a workout. My over analytical brain would endlessly question different options of what type of excercises to do, and eventually get bored and go on to something else. Me excuse for not working out would be "I haven't figured out a program yet". If you have someone training you, all you have to do is show up and follow directions. You may never gain a love of excercise, but by showing up and going through the motions under the care of someone else, you will get the benefits!

Confidence, health, testosterone all increased when I started excercising.

P.S. If you don't want to build a lot of muscle, Yoga is probably the perfect excercise for keeping yourself in general good shape and health
 

sagewolf

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Yoga? No-- any exercise I take up is going to have to have some objective other than 'keeping me fit'. If I'm doing it for a reason, I find it easier to keep up with something, but if it's just because i should, I tend to let it slip. Recreation is a good reason, but I don't like competitive sports. I'll probably take up surfing when I go to Dun Laoghaire-- that's a lot of fun (if the beaches aren't completely disgusting there, near the city). Either that or martial arts would be good.

@FP: And have 8! (40,320) types? The sixteen types MBTI describes don't work off the cognitive processes so much as they work off the letter preferences anyway. Types are only a guideline to how a person may think/behave anyway-- that's forgotten very easily, it seems. I find that the INTP type descriptions describe me better than any others do, but I also have very developed Fe and Fi functions; at least, they're more developed than an INTP's should be, according to the blueprint laid out by MBTI.
 
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Surfing would probably be just as good as yoga, cause you use your whole body and develop core strength.

I only said Yoga because it covers a bit of everything: strengthening of all body parts, stretching of all body parts. Maybe not cardio, but everything else, and you start feeling the benefits immediately.

Ultimately martial arts and weightlifting have the most practical application. Just make sure whatever you do, all body parts are excercised, or you can create imbalances that lead to long term health risks and injury.

(I type this instead of going to my yoga class, zen meditation class, homework.... etc..)
 

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life without exercies would be a disaster for me, though i don't really do exercise, i do things like play basketball, ski, hike, cycle. the closest i can come to exercise is lifting weights, but i usually get bored after 3-6 months and quit.
 

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I do yoga every day. About forty minutes. I used to be super lazy, got winded climbing up staires, etc. but since I was always thin, never cared. Then I got interested in health and now unfortunately I use yoga as a way to procrastinate from getting more important stuff done.

I have loads of energy and a rage builds up inside me if I don"t exercise.

I could no longer live without it.


A friend just made fun of me saying I was gonna get manly from yoga, but she is just saying that because she is literally obese. You do not get manly from yoga, you stay/get very feminine.
 

Insanity

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I honestly never got the point of working out. Going for a walk outside has a reason and you just happen to get exercise then. But working out just to work out is stupid to me. If I'm going to be spending energy, I want something in return.
 

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Exercise for the sake of exercise never appealed much to me. My loss.

I started out when a teenager with some highly physical jobs (carpenter, garbage collector, mason's helper, loading an icehouse -- all summer-type jobs in a resort economy). Got me into shape and gave me good fundamental muscle structure. After that I managed to stay active in the real world despite having a relatively desk-bound job (journalist). Now that I'm older (almost 60) the word "decrepitude" comes into my mind more often. I've had two operations on my knees to remove cartilage originally damaged when I was 32 and racing bicycles for a summer. I have also recently seen photos of my father's uncles when they were about my age, back around 1900-1920 or so, and a more portly group of aging Scots is hard to imagine. That's like a genetic wake-up call for me, because my body seems to be taking the same relatively healthy food in the same amounts that it ever did, yet my baseline weight goes up.

I'd love a new career in a physically tougher occupation, but I need the money from this one. Looks like I'm going to be exercising, and I appreciate the great advice some of you who are serious about it have shared with the rest of us lazy dilettantes. :-)

I'd agree that regular exercise is a good habit to get into. I remember the summer I was doing the bike thing I'd also run to get in shape, and exactly once I got through the pain and reached some heavenly place where the scenery floated by and I was high as a kite and had utterly burned out the toxins from a poisoned relationship. Just didn't care any more, in a good way. So there's something in it, requires more diligence than INTPs sometimes care to invest.
 

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I'd have to recommend a martial arts of sorts. I was in kung fu (when I could afford it) and it is a very good form of exercise. The movements are very precise and graceful. It improved my strength, flexibility, agility and physical self awareness. If your worried about it being high-impact, then I'd recommend tai-chi instead. It has similar movements to kung fu, but is slowed down, and less intense.

DDR at high levels also makes for great exercise + its really fun.
 

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i absolutely believe and adhere to the integral nature of mind/body and spirit.
this motivates me to maximise fitness as a strong, healthy body means a strong, healthy mind.

for the same reason, i also fast seasonally.
 

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Exercise and nutrition has become extremely important to me in the last year. Prior to that I never heeded caution unless it was from direct causality of job/etc.

I tried numerous things to get into exercise, but they are so damned boring. Exercising with people didn't do anything for me.

Ultimately I got into exercise through dancing, something I thought I would never do. I was actually horrible at dancing and I have never had any real desire to go 'clubbing.'

Even so, dancing was fun once I started. I do it in my basement, where no one can see. I do it to hip-hop but house trance works well too, especially for an intense workout.

I started out with crip-walking, something that is incredibly low impact and has a lazy sense of style, the perfect intro. Sure, I looked like an idiot but no one was watching and I was becoming healthier.

It wasn't always fun to keep up with, but I got far enough to truly realize the benefit and the need. I am MUCH less depressed and I actually feel like I have some level of energy above 0 when I exercise regularly.

Since I started exercising and implementing a healthier diet my ability to learn and natural contentment with the world has inclined drastically.
 

Alice?

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Hmm. Most of my excercise comes from walking around campus and my job, which has a fair amount of upper-body labor. I go running with friends about once a week, but I find it so... tedious sometimes. It's definitiely not as much as I should be getting, though, and I've never been much of a gym person. Even if if my social anxiety didn't get in the way, the surroundings are so boring and it's always kind of suffocating in there to me. I do love to walk, though, especially when there's music to listen to or something interesting to think about.
I am planning to take a yoga class on campus next semester, and I'm really looking forward to regaining some of my flexibility since I stopped dancing a couple years ago because of an injury.
 

NeverAmI

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Yoga sounds fun, I have never tried it. I have this irrational fear that I will somehow try a position that doesn't work, then I will lose balance and hit my head. Such a head injury could lead to mental retardation.

Actually, mental retardation doesn't quite sound so bad... Maybe I should try yoga!
 

Regan

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i would really love to be able to run - but when i try, it kicks my ass. srsly.

i am so lazy
 
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