What Does it Mean to Train?

How do you categorize your fitness?

The way we think about our fitness and the words we choose to describe our fitness routine can dramatically change our perspective. It can detract and downplay our efforts, making them seem less substantial. Or it can motivate and focus the efforts we put into each day to try to be better than the day before.

Are you doing a different workout every day, every week, cherry picking the exercises you want to do that day? Are you in turn also skipping the exercises you don’t like to do? The answer to the latter is most likely yes.

Are you showing up for the most grueling workouts possible? Punishing yourself for your indulgent nature the day before? If we’re being honest, I think most of us would admit we’ve been in that camp at some point. It is exactly as it sounds. It’s more punishment than it is athleticism, and isn’t conducive to our long-term goals.

Are you training for an athletic event? Or training to be in the best shape you can be in? To be faster, stronger, better in your everyday? Imagine what that could look like: taking time to plan out your training, to properly rest before and after your training, and sticking it out for both your short and long-term goals.

You don’t have to be a professional athlete to train. If you are committed to getting better, to taking care of your body, and to showing up consistently to work towards both the physical and mental training goal.. you’re doing it! You are TRAINING.

When we own that language, we start to see our routine through a new lens. Everything has a purpose. We have a reason to eat what we eat, to prioritize sleep, and we have a reason to train at higher and lower intensities throughout the weeks and months. When you train you’re looking to make progress over the short and long term. To do that, you have to do the exercises you don’t always love, and you cannot drive yourself into the ground every day of training.

When you train you allow yourself the freedom to rest and to take it lighter some days because you know you’re working for the long term. You also allow yourself peaking periods of training when it’s appropriate to hit it hard and really push yourself. Ultimately training is also about sustainability, and most of us are looking to feel good and function at a higher level for a long period of time.

So I urge you to change your mindset, to choose carefully the way you describe and categorize your fitness. Tell people you are going to train (instead of workout). Put it in your calendar as your time to train. Then act like it. Take care of your body, prioritize your training, and watch what happens!

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