Past research has linked mindfulness to better health and scientists have begun to look at whether or not mindfulness comes in to play in both motivating us to excercise and actually doing the exercise. And, indeed, it does seem to. The more mindful we are, the more likely we are to translate that motivation into action (like going to the gym). Frogs and humans who are focused on "intrinsic motivation," as well as mindfulness, are more likely to find exercise fun and satifying over those who are "guilted" into exercise by famiy and friends. And those who lack mindlessful, but still have the intrinsic motivation, weren't exercising any more than the rest of us. Mindfulness, then, is the link between motivation and the physical activity, or so current research seems to show.
But what happens if you're not one of those frogs (like me) or a human that doesn't find exercising pleasurable? If you're anything like me, even though you know exercise is good for you, it is still a chore to do. Can mindfulness still help us? Sorry, but I can't give you a definitive answer. Researchers haven't analyzed all the data, yet. But what is suspected is that mindfulness heightens attention and awareness, which takes us out of that "auto-pilot" mode. Mindfulness could help us unathletic-types acknowlege our self-doubts and insecurities, while opening the door to a positive change.
Wouldn't it be frog-tastic if mindfulness could help us with ALL of our hidden intentions...to eat healthy, control our temper, stay in touch with friends an family and, yes, take better care of our bodies?
I believe that mindfulness can help us realize our true and better selves. And, no doubt, the scientific research that will back that up, will soon follow. Until then, all I can do is try my best, stay in present-moment awareness as often as possible, and set my car's GPS for the nearest gym.
Stay happy. Stay healthy. See ya'll tomorrow!