The Power of Positive Thinking for Fitness Results
Have you ever noticed that fitness classes are full of encouragement? There you are working hard, watching sweat drip to the floor. Your legs feel like putty and you suspect they’ll fail you at any moment. Then when you’re about to collapse, you hear the fitness class instructor.
“You guys are doing great! Stay strong! You got this - only 30 more seconds to go!”
The positivity is infectious. You lift your head and think “I can do this!” You dig down deep and find the strength to push through.
How Positive Thinking Leads to Better Results
From the anecdote above, you might imagine how positive thinking can lead to better results. When you believe you can do something, you’re much more likely to try. That can equate to improved results in a few different ways.
First, you might push yourself harder, therefore challenging your muscles more, and providing them the stimulus they need to grow back stronger. But if you believe in yourself, and think positively, you’re more likely to set ambitious goals and then stay committed to reaching them. Positive thinking keeps you committed. Let’s use an example.
Let’s say you want to run a marathon. It’s an ambitious goal that you’re not quite sure how to achieve. And, if you were to leap off your couch today and run a marathon, you might seriously injure yourself. With negative thinking you might conclude that you can’t run a marathon. So, you quit before you even start. But, negative thinking leads you to a false conclusion. The reality is that you CAN run a marathon. You’re just not ready to today.
If you take the negative approach of believing something “can’t” be done, your brain will stop trying. But, when you replace that with “can”, you leave the door open for your mind to find the solution. That’s the magic of positive thinking. That’s how you reach more ambitious goals. That’s how you lose weight, get fit, and get better results. When you believe it can be done, you commit to getting it done.
The Health Merits of Positive Thinking
A 2017 study in Health Psychology further underscored the health benefits of positive thinking, as related to fitness. In this case, the researchers looked at how people perceived their fitness in comparison to others, and then how that perception affected their overall health. The study found that independent from your level of physical activity, your perception of physical activity actually had an effect on your overall mortality. Even after accounting for physical activity, the study found that those who perceived themselves as less active than others had up to a 71% increased likelihood of mortality.
What does this mean?
First of all, don’t get worked up worrying that you’re risking death every time you compare yourself to someone or think of yourself in a negative light. But, it is a good reminder to not compare yourself to others and to think positively about your own accomplishments. Most of us find it pretty easy to recognize the accomplishments of others while diminishing our own accomplishments. But, don’t sell yourself short. When you acknowledge your own wins, you might improve your health, and you’ll definitely find more joy in life.
Be Good to Yourself
The moral of the story is to be good to yourself. Remember the encouragement you get from that fitness class instructor who tells you you’re doing great, and that you’ve got more strength left inside of you. Also remember that you don’t need someone else’s permission to be good to yourself. Rather than waiting for someone to recognize your accomplishments, take the time to recognize your own accomplishments.
For many people, negative thinking can be a tough habit to break. So, here are a few tips to help ease that negative default to a positive one.
Be Mindful - Pay attention to your thoughts and how you think about yourself. Start by recognizing where you speak negatively to yourself.
Reframe Negative Beliefs - Once you recognize your negative thoughts you can work on reorienting them with a positive spin. “I don’t know how to do that” becomes “I can learn how to do that”.
Surround Yourself with Positive People - It’s hard to think positive if you’re surrounded by other peoples negative thoughts. Do whatever it takes to find other positive people. Joining a Seattle fitness class can be a great way to find like minded, positive people.
A Positive Fitness Community
Looking to push yourself to the next level, achieve your fitness goals, and revel in the results? Demco Fitness is a Seattle fitness center that’s rooted in a positive community of members and personal trainers. We work with our clients to meet their personalized goals, wherever they’re at on their fitness journey. If you’re looking for a positive atmosphere, without the negative gym vibe, Demco Fitness is the Seattle gym for you.