Fitness: Forget the Workout – Let’s Play!


A girlfriend of mine called the other day, unfortunately just missing me, and left a feel-good voicemail. She heard a man on the radio talking about recreation as re-creating ourselves. Because recreation for fitness and intrinsic movement are such powerful components of the healthy lifestyle program at Green Mountain, it really hit home. Finding an activity we really love – in the way that it re-creates our most genuine self – is such a big idea.

At the end of a long day this week, I popped in a CD, and began to work on some choreography for a Zumba class I would be teaching later in the week. Zumba is a fantastic outlet for me, in that dancing and music have always made my “Favorites” list. It’s still something I have to learn, however, and I just couldn’t seem to de-stress with it that day. I tossed in a different CD with a few of my newest favorite songs, and just began to throw out whatever choreography came, whatever the music inspired. Forty minutes later, I was more breathless than I’d been in nearly a month…and I hadn’t even noticed. I was lost in true self-expression, in passionately exhibiting everything in my unique makeup. It was more than enjoyment…it was the satisfaction that only comes from being wholly honest in participating in an activity that brings us sincere joy. When we find something like that, the parts of us that sometimes get hidden are allowed to come out, re-creating us.

Someone once told me that you can learn everything you need to know about that person by watching the way they play the sport they care about. I think you can learn by watching the way the play, period. In a country where a majority of working men and women list work as their biggest stressor, I think the idea of play gets lost, which is quite sad when you consider this entire discussion. If we never take the time to re-create the part of us we love most, we may start to lose touch with who we really enjoy being.

So get fit to play, because playing will keep you fit!

4 responses to “Fitness: Forget the Workout – Let’s Play!”

  1. Stemulite says:

    I agree with you wholeheartedly. Anytime you can accomplish your goals by ‘playing’, you sure are lucky.

    Funny, but after years and years of being a serious athlete (age group, high school, college), I find I only consider myself to be ‘training’ when I’m watching the clock and doing ‘linear’ exercise. It is very difficult for me to consider anything fun (hiking, dancing, snowboarding, etc.) to be ‘exercise’.

    Isn’t that sad?

    Oh well, I enjoy things like treadmill running and swimming 4 x 1000 yards. Lucky me, I guess.

  2. Parth says:

    A very interesting concept. Well, if you’re not passionate about something, it’s not going to workout out for you. I always say that the first step to anything is belief. Doesn’t really matter wat fitness plan you follow, if you don’t beleive in it, you’re not going anywhere.

  3. Miranda says:

    Great post! I couldn’t agree with you more! We need to let ourselves enjoy life. Not everything has to be a chore…fitness can be fun you just have to find the activity that rings true for you.

  4. Meredith says:

    No matter if you enjoy more athletic training-type of movement or tossing a frisby for your dog, enjoying the movement is what it’s about! Different people find enjoyment in different things – devoting time to passions and personal interests can be so rewarding, especially when it can be coupled with movement.

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meredith beckman

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