Friday, March 31, 2006

Fight Exercise Boredom With Podcasts!

Yourself!Fitness is certainly the most effective videogame workout I've found. There is a lot of variety, it uses time effectively, it's easy and it covers just about every type of exercise you need. can get a little boring. Much of the problem is that it's not really a game so you're not being challenged to win or beat a high score. At first there's the challenge of learning all the new exercises and improving your Physical Challenge scores and unlocking new areas, but now that I'm coming up on 70 workouts that sort of stuff has tapered off. The novelty has worn as well, and the cheesy MIDI songs were already annoying after the first week.

I love my regular 45-minute workouts, but I was starting to feel unproductive doing them. So as of today I've hit on a new strategy: Podcasts!

Now that I know all the exercises down cold, I don't really need to hear Maya's description or the music to play along. So I tried turning down the sound and playing other music, music I actually like, but it's distracting to exercise when the beat of the music isn't the same as the rhythm Maya is following. What I can do, though, is listen to podcasts. Whether it's instructional or just for fun, a good spoken program distracts me from the exercise and makes me feel more productive - stimulating the brain as well as the body. So I turn the TV volume way down, turn my computer volume up, watch Maya, and do my exercises while I listen to, say, the Penn Jillette talk radio show downloaded via iTunes. It's a great combination!

So, what do you do to keep workouts interesting?

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I recently starting doing just the same thing you're doing. Like you, I started with music, and then moved on to recordings of speeches and conversations and such because speech lacks the distracting, low-level rhythms that music usually brings. The difference is that I do this listening while I stretch in the mornings, without the help of any game, and so the recordings are the only outside influence toward keeping me on a reasonably tight schedule. It's very helpful.

4/09/2006 12:05 PM  

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