Let’s have a moment of full disclosure before I begin: I am in no way a trained fitness guru or a doctor. Seriously, up until last month working out to me was walking to the freezer to mingle with my friends Ben & Jerry or car dancing to Call Me Maybe. This has just been my method to get myself more active with something I love.
I have discovered the amazingness of audiobooks in helping me curb the lazy and get done All Of The Things I Hate To Do But Have To Because I’m A Grown-up. I have been an audiobook participator prior to this. They made me a wee bit less stabby during my commute and I really started to not care about sitting in traffic (minus when I have to pee or when I’m really hungry). They’ve been great on long car rides when I’m by myself. I had become a fan of them finally after being scared of them.
But I never realized how fantastical they were as motivators.
How They Are Helping Me To Get In Shape & Be Productive Maniac Around The House
I’ve always been a pretty thin girl (runs in the family) but I’ve noticed that the ol’ metabolism just ain’t what she used to be so the husband and I decided we were going to work out. Guys, I hate working out. I’m 27 and haven’t worked out regularly since I played lacrosse in high school. I’d rather been subjected to torture than willingly work out. Though working out really is about the same as torture. I feel like I am going to die every moment I’m working out and make the most hideous faces doing it. I call BULLSHIT on the glowing people who feel all magnificent and like they could conquer the world after working out. LIES. I look like death and feel like death afterwards.
I’ve never been able to be consistent about it until now. I mean, I’m only a month in but UM this is an accomplishment for me. Here’s the deal:
1. Pick an audiobook you know is going to REALLY REALLY capture your attention or that you’ve been dying to read. I go for something lighter because sometimes really densely written books are hard for me to concentrate on. I also ask other audiobook lovers or read audiobook reviews to find audiobooks with really great narrators. A narrator can make or break your experience, folks. Nobody wants to listen to someone that reminds them of the most boring, monotone professor they ever had. This is an IMPORTANT step because it ties into step 2.
2. Motivation is a problem for me and I needed strict rules. I’m like the horse that needs to follow the carrot. Thus I have made a rule that I am not allowed to listen to my audiobook anywhere else except for working out (or taking a walk) or while cleaning. This is why #1 is so important because I have to WANT to find out what happens and to finish the book. I made a strict rule about my “Active” audiobook not being allowed to be used in the car. I’ll have another audiobook for that.
3. Figure out what “active” is to you. The rules I have made for myself for now as I’m easing in to the workout thing is that I must do some sort of cardio for at least 30 minutes every day. Sometimes I do some free weights. I also let myself listen, as I said, when I’m being active around the house — washing dishes, cleaning, folding clothes or even yard work like raking leaves. I’ll cut myself some slack if I’m sick or in other situations where I may not be home and have access to a gym but that’s it. Even if I’m not feeling like I want to do a really intense workout, I still make myself at least walk on the treadmill slowly for 30 minutes.
4. Give yourself reward: The audiobook itself is a reward in a way but I’ve decided that for every three ( you can change this accordingly) audiobooks I complete I get to go out and buy a new book (y’all know I am still looking for work as I got laid off from work right before my wedding so this is a big deal to me). Pick whatever reward you want — new shoes, new makeup, a fancy dinner, a whole chocolate cake after your workout. Whatever will help motivate you.
5. Give yourself a punishment: You don’t HAVE to do this but I’ve made a rule for myself that if I skip a workout because I’m just being lazy that the next time I work out I am not allowed to listen to my audiobook or my music. So that’s THIRTY FREAKING MINUTES OF TORTURE IN WHICH I AM NOT DISTRACTED BY ANYTHING. It has helped me by making me less likely to skip a workout for lazy reasons.
6. Enjoy the results! I don’t feel like I’ve drastically seen a difference in my body yet but I honestly have stuck to my workout which I truly have never done before. I feel super productive because I’m getting through a book a want to read and keeping myself active and healthy. It’s funny because I also find myself sometimes getting done with a workout and ending on a good part and so I’ll come home and do the dishes just so I can end at a better place. The house is staying a little bit more clean and I really dread doing some of these tasks less because I’m doing something I enjoy. I still don’t enjoy working out but this helps. It does.
A few other things:
- Let’s do the math a little bit. Let’s say you work out/are active for an hour each day and your audiobook is 8 hours long…you can have that sucker done in a little over a week. So that would be 3-4 extra books you could be “reading” per month! WOO!
- I find them to be great for times when you might want to re-read a book in the series before the next book comes out. It will be easier for you to concentrate and follow because you are already familiar with the story. Same goes for old favorite. Harry Potter fans SWEAR by the audiobooks and say that the narrator is incredible so all you HP fans who are dying for a re-read it might be a good route to go!
- I’ve been utilizing my library for free audiobooks as well as their Overdrive system where you can download it online. Sometimes I can find decently priced ones on Amazon. There is also ITunes and of course Audible. Another great option is Paperbackswap. You basically get credits for swapping books and sending them out to people in exchange for credits. I used to use it A LOT. That way when you are done with the audiobook you could put it back up there and get a new one!
-Be careful. I know it’s easy to get all caught up in a book but I don’t want to see this happen.
What about you guys…do you listen to audiobooks to help you work out or get things done around the house? What are some of your favorite audiobooks? I’m sure others (including myself) would love some good recommendations for audiobooks that were so captivating!