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Bemovelive.com Blog features the latest fitness and clean eating advice from John Holley, MS, CSCS. Blogs focus on exercise, nutrition, sleep, stress reduction and getting the most out of your workouts.

ARE YOU MOTIVATED?

John Holley

You need a little motivation from time to time to keep exercising. No matter how much you’ve accomplished there are days when the drive-thru and the couch seem look like Heaven and the gym…Here are a few positive books you might consider the next time you’re low on oomph:

The Energy Bus, by Jon Gordon, (http://amzn.to/1EnzcBb) is an easy-to-read parable about a middle-aged man who comes home one day and starts to take stock of his life - he is failing at his job, in his marriage and with his kids. When his car breaks down on his way to work and he has to take the bus to work - he meets a bus driver and passengers who force him to reflect on his life and a better way forward. The author, through this parable, reveals "10 secrets" for success in life, at home and in work that lead to fulfillment and accomplishment. The 10 rules are:

1) You're the driver of your bus
2) Desire, vision, and focus move your bus in the right direction
3) Fuel your ride with positive energy (negative energy is friction)
4) Invite people on your bus and share your vision for the road ahead
5) Don't waste your energy on those who don't get on your bus
6) Post a sign that says no energy vampires allowed on your bus (get rid of the malcontents)
7) Enthusiasm attracts more passengers and energizes them for the ride
8) Love your passengers by giving them your time, listening, recognition, service - work to bring out the best in them
9) Drive with purpose
10) Have fun and enjoy the ride

Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain, by John J. Ratey, (http://amzn.to/1KgslMo) explains in clear terms the role exercise plays in our mental processes. The contention is that moving our muscles produces proteins that play key roles in our highest thought processes. Ratey says, "thinking is the internalization of movement." He illustrates this with the story of the sea squirt that hatches with a rudimentary spinal cord and 300 brain cells. It has only hours to find a spot of coral on which to put down roots or die. When it does put down roots, it eats its brain. According to Ratey only a moving animal needs a brain. He also cites studies, which assert we can alter our mental states by physically moving. Among the areas Ratey covers are: learning, stress, depression, ADD, and aging. This book is a great motivator for exercise.

No Sweat: How the Simple Science of Motivation Can Bring You A Lifetime of Fitness, by  Michelle Segar, PhD, (http://amzn.to/1EnCAMk) introduces MAPS (Meaning, Awareness, Permission, Strategy) to “map” our route to a lifetime of fitness and well-being. It’s based on over 20 years of her research and client experience on exercise and motivation.

What makes MAPS so unique is it drills down to what matters most to people and offers
motivational strategies to start and stay on track. Segar teaches us to ask the right questions by identifying our limiting beliefs as well as what fuels us in life. Simply put, she calls us out and asks us to get real with our lives. For example, exercise per se, isn’t the problem, it’s our relationship with it.

MAPS guides us to uncover our core values, align with them, and naturally allow physical movement to nourish us. Failed attempts to get fit for the wrong reasons are depleting. No Sweat puts an end to the “vicious cycle of failure” that’s driven by the wrong reasons to be fit. By identifying your why’s, what used to be a chore becomes a gift. Segar repeatedly reminds us, “what sustains us, we sustain.”