I agree very much with everything that lowspark has said. I've been working on increasing my exercise/activity level and losing weight for a year. I've met with some pretty significant success so far (I've lost 30 pounds and turned my gym habit into an actual habit), but I still have a long way to go. And honestly, though I am at the point where I can find some satisfaction out of the things I am doing, I don't really enjoy
them. At least, not in the usual sense.
From my own experience with exercising, I have a few pieces of advice to offer (feel free to ignore them all
). First, it's okay to not have any forms of physical activity that you particularly like. It's hard to like physical activity when you feel awful in your own skin, and when you're not in good shape. What's more important is not that you have a lot of fun being active. What's important is that you find a way to do it.
I have no basis for this theory, but I think that I, at least, will begin to like physical activity more as I get stronger and lose weight. It will stop being so hard, and I will have more room to enjoy it. For now, though, it's not my idea of fun, but it's not so onerous that it prevents me from doing it regularly.
Second, if you don't have them already, find yourself some workout clothes that make you feel good. I started out going to the gym wearing ratty old t-shirts and sweatpants I had lying around. Even though I am mostly alone when I use my apartment complex's fitness room, it exacerbated my feelings of insecurity about my body. I finally bit the bullet and bought some moisture-wicking t-shirts from Target that I only ever wear when I'm working out. Having workout clothes that I found flattering was a huge
help in getting and keeping me motivated. I personally find that I prefer workout clothes that are relatively form-fitting, both because they are actually more comfortable, and because they make me feel good about myself. So I wear stretchy yoga pants and the form-fitting t-shirt, and am frequently known to admire how nice that combo makes my butt look.
Finally, with regard to food, I really like popcorn. I also find that popcorn is an excellent substitute for chips. It's not the same, not by a long shot, but it is often close enough to keep me away from chips for at least awhile. I also discovered that you can put plain kernels into a microwave safe bowl (covered with a microwave safe lid) and microwave the lot for about 4 minutes (give or take) to produce delicious popcorn that is essentially air popped.
I also discovered that my local fancy-pants grocery store (which has an excellent bulk foods and spices section) sells delicious white cheddar powder. Add that to microwave-popped popcorn with a bit of butter or oil (or even without fat) and some salt and garlic powder, and you've got white cheddar popcorn that is as delicious as the stuff you can buy. Not the same, but really yummy. And popcorn has the advantage of being a very filling snack that, all by itself, doesn't have much in the way of calories. Microwaving it the way I describe above also means you can make just one serving at a time very easily, which helps with portion control. It's just enough work that I am unlikely to go back for "seconds", though I always tell myself I can if I really want to.