Distraction Cardio

I don’t know about you, but I hate cardiovascular exercises. I know they’re the healthiest and best exercises for the body, but I just hate them. A couple minutes in, I start to feel a combination of tired, bored, lazy, and want to quit. However, I have recently found a way to use the power of distraction and easily do hours of cardio.

First, I tried watching TV while I pedal away on my stationary bike. It didn’t help. I end up just watching TV while sitting on the bike until my ass starts to hurt. I would pedal for a few minutes, work up a little sweat, and then I want to stop. I didn’t purposely try this, but one day I decided to play some shitty ipad games while pedaling and it surprisingly worked wonders. Sure, I still feel like stopping every so often but it’s definitely much easier to resume biking. Before I know it, I’m dripping sweat and literally more than half my shirt is covered in sweat. (I sweat a lot. A few years ago, every time I run 10km, my entire shirt gets covered in sweat.)

Somehow, casual gaming has just the right amount of distraction to make exercising much easier. It probably won’t work for everyone, but if you have trouble keeping up with cardio exercises, it might be worth it for you try different distractions to see if maybe one of them will work for you. To be clear, exercising will not magically become effortless. It will still take a bit of willpower, but it’s definitely easier. For the record, my bike is set to fairly heavy. Actually, it’s stuck there either because I didn’t assemble the bike properly or it was broken to begin with. I didn’t exchange it because I knew I would mostly use the heavy setting anyway and it’s not too heavy. So this distraction exercise thing I’m doing is actually not great cardio because my heart rate doesn’t rise too much, but my sweat proves that it’s still good exercise.

…This post feels too “feel-goody” and I don’t like that. Let me include something I wrote on facebook yesterday to change the mood a little and hopefully end this on an entertaining note: I just looked out the window and saw a teenage kid playing basketball a couple houses down. He attempted to do some fancy dribbling and then proceeded to shoot an air ball. He’s so lucky that he doesn’t know somebody saw that.

2 thoughts on “Distraction Cardio

  1. About two years ago, I started my weight loss / workout regime by doing something similar to what you mention.

    I use a stationary recumbent bike (specifically this one http://www.amazon.com/Life-Fitness-LifeCycle-Recumbent-Exercise/dp/B001W09ML0 , there are cheap ones like those all over Craigslist) because I’m fucking lazy and I want to sit on my ass. I ended up finding a winning combination by playing PS2 games while listening to audiobooks, podcasts, or TED talks. I went with a PS2 because I didn’t want to get too tempted to keep playing the games after I finished working out.

    In the past two years, I’ve gone from 24% body fat down to 15%, and I burned through at least 40 games and twice as many audiobooks. Anyway, you might want to look into something like that.

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