Intuitive Fitness

Intuitive Fitness

Intuitive Fitness

  • by Karl MacPhee
  • January 31, 2019

"I learned a long time ago that following a program just does not work for my personality."

Sure, if I wanted to maximize my results, following a strict progressive routine would be optimal, however, I'm more interested in enjoying my fitness rather than having to do something because it's on the schedule.

Over the past few years, after following a few programs, I decided to follow what I call Intuitive Fitness. I know the things I enjoy and I know what I need to work on so I let my intuition guide me, simple as that.

As an example, I generally go for a walk on Monday mornings and mix up a bunch of exercises along the way. This allows me to listen to a podcast or two, get some fresh air and fit in some movement.

Today, my intuition told me to take my kettlebells and just having them along for the ride gave me more options in terms of exercises. Typically when I go for the walk I do a lot of push ups, mountain climbers and lunges but today I did squat to press, cleans, swings, jerks, farmers carry and rows.

All of this added up to a more complete body workout, and added variety, which is important to me in all areas of my life.

If you are struggling with fitness and you feel as though a strict routine is not for you, I suggest that you do the following:

  1. Write down all the things you enjoy most about fitness/movement
  2. Keep the list visible so you are inspired each day 
  3. Decide how many days of movement per week is realistic for you
  4. Allow your intuition to inform your decisions

Here's my example:

  • Trail running
  • Cycling
  • Playground Workouts
  • Morning walk/bodyweight exercises
  • Backpack hike in trails
  • Play at playground with the kids
  • Yoga
  • Stair workouts
  • Yard work/house work
  • Kettlebell workouts
  • Adventures (canoeing, hiking)
  • Run when the kids are my coaches and they ride their bikes
  • Swimming

I prefer to workout 7 days a week, but some days it's 20 minutes while other days I may go for a 2-3 hour ride or hike.

Each night I tend to have a feeling that shows up to tell me what to do the next day. This is often related to the weather as well, so on a day when I know it will rain heavily, I will likely stick to my gym, but when it's going to be nice out, I tend to choose something to do outdoors.

To specify even more, if I run for an hour on Tuesday, chances are I won't be drawn to run the next day, but I may come up with something more fun such as playing at the playground with the kids or going for a morning bike ride.

The only structure here is that I have a list of things I enjoy, and I try not to repeat them two days in a row. I also try to keep the variety flowing so I don't get bored or overdo things with one thing all the time.

So there you have it. If you are drawn to this concept, start with your list, figure out how often it's realistic for you to move and tune into your intuition as your guide.

What are your thoughts after reading this? Do you prefer structure or variety?

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Karl MacPhee

Karl MacPhee

Karl MacPhee provides the highest quality nutrition, fitness and lifestyle coaching that inspires and guides you to live your best life, full of wonder, growth and adventure. Karl is based in Edmonton, AB, however, his online coaching clients come from all corners of the globe.

With a background in personal fitness, habit-based nutrition and co-active life coaching, he takes a holistic approach to your health and wellness. As your guide, he will co-actively support you, teach you and encourage you on each step of your journey.

Karl knows it’s about more than the adventure and there are many lessons along the journey.


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