This may sound strange, but years ago when I was applying to college, I began my college admission’s essay…wait for it…at the gym! Yes, while hundreds of other students put in hours at the library or glued to the computer chair, I began scribbling my essay (that got me into JMU) on the elliptical machine…with a pen and piece of scrap paper. What can I say; a light bulb hit while I was trucking along on the machine and I went with it. I’ve also thought of article ideas on long runs, have worked through job stresses by lifting weights and have tackled my way through life’s toughest decisions simply by going for a long walk.
While this may sound completely out there to you, I promise I have a point. That is that 99% of the time problems can be solved through exercise. Hear me out. Normally when we’re stuck in a rut (whether it be a deadline or a mini life crisis) we tend to shut down and fall apart. That’s how I used to handle problems in high school. If I was upset about a guy, an assignment, or a tricky decision, I’d shut down completely. I’d run into my room, slam the door and just sit there with my problems feeling sorry for myself. But let’s be serious: that gets us no where. In fact, it’s working backwards, and no one wants that.
Instead, next time you find yourself in a tricky situation, or even when you’re having one of those “brain farts,” go for a swim. Or lace up your running shoes and hit the road, even if you only go a couple miles. It’s amazing what our minds can do when we let loose and relax. And that’s exactly what exercise does for us. Not only is it beneficial for weight management and healthy hearts, but exercise is a 100% mind-clearing miracle drug. It cures problems thick and thin, whether it’s anger from your unreasonable boss or a difficult financial decision you’re not sure of. The thing is: exercise gives you all the answers you normally wouldn’t think of yourself. Whether it’s the change of environment or simply getting your body moving, all I can tell you is that it works. And boy does it work well. So I challenge you to tackle your rut the right way, the healthy way for once, and see how wonderful you’ll feel afterwards.
Feel free to share any stories or successes you’ve had by “running through a rut.”