You are exercising to lose weight and you aren’t losing any, what now?

Image description: A photo of a winding road in Iceland with lupins by the roadside
Image description: A photo of a winding road in Iceland with lupins by the roadside. Photo from Unsplash.

So maybe you set out to do things differently in 2018. Your plan was to go to the gym, tidy up your diet, drop a dress size or two. Suppose though that instead you went to the gym, and maybe even cut out the cookies and the chips, and didn’t lose any weight. It’s a common story. It’s my story usually.

So what now?

Should you just quit trying? Quit exercising?

There are dozens of lists on this topic, reasons to keep exercising that aren’t about weight loss.

Here’s my favorite because it’s the longest. It’s 45 reasons to exercise that have nothing to do with weight loss.

There are lots of good reasons for severing the tie between exercise and weight loss. For lots of us it just doesn’t happen. See my post on plus size endurance athletes.

Also I worry it sends the wrong message to thin people.

So here are my favorite reasons for working out that have nothing to do with dropping a dress size.

1. The immediate thing is that it feels good. I always feel better after.

2. For me, exercise is usually social. It’s fun. It’s friends. Sometimes it’s family too. Often dogs are involved.

3. The health benefits of exercise go far beyond weight loss.

4. Even the looks related benefits go beyond weight loss. I may not lose weight but I like building muscle. Exercise makes my posture better too.

5. Then there’s the not so immediate things like sports performance, everyday functional fitness.

6. And then there are the distant goals. I want to still be hiking in my 80s.

How about you? Why do you exercise? What non weight related goals motivate you?

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