Swap Training for Listening


Our Life Fitness Academy (LFA) Global Master Trainer Paul Russell, who has been a part of Life Fitness for more than 20 years, shares his tips on swapping training for listening.

Sometimes I’ll run for 20 minutes, sometimes a couple hours, but I never go for a run.

 If I was really good at running, by which I mean there was a chance I might win a medal, well maybe I’d take it a little more seriously. I’d organise my training, programme the way I ate and slept, buy some special shorts, do repeat intervals, analyse my biomechanics, correlate my heart rate; all the science.

In the context of being an elite athlete, monitoring pace and performance is an essential component of winning. For the rest of us, it just sucks all the fun out of the whole thing. Which is why I don’t do it. What I do instead is listen to stuff. In particular, I love listening to Podcasts. I’ve got 3 or 4 favourites, covering movies, economics, hip hop and philosophy, and this is my motivation when it comes to scheduling some free time.

I’m not looking at my calendar trying to find time to go for a run, because I will find entirely too many reasons why I can’t fit one in. But making time to listen to my favourite shows seems much easier. And the beauty of tying this in with a run, is not even that I get to do some running, but that I get to listen to the whole thing uninterrupted and without distraction.

There are so many benefits from exercise, but we’ll only ever enjoy these if we find exercise that we enjoy in the first instance. Because then we’ll keep doing it. So I enjoy listening to my favourite shows, and I just happen to do this while I run, or walk, but you could listen while you were on an indoor bike, lifting some weights, or just pottering around the gym having a play on whatever takes your fancy.

This might not be the approach for everyone, and some need to go all out all action all the time hard core every time they work out, but for the rest of us the goal isn’t to win medals and prizes, it’s just to win at life, and that means fitness. And with literally millions of shows to choose from, that might mean swapping training for listening.

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swap training for listening
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