Six Fitness Personalities: Which One Are You?
by our Health Guru

There are as many ways to get cardiovascular exercise as there are ways to move your body, so expand your horizons. Look for opportunities to move your body whenever you can. Not sure where to start? I find that most clients have a certain "fitness personality." They are (not surprisingly) attracted to activities that jive with who they are. It sounds like common sense, but most of us don't think of fitness that way. Here are six of the most common fitness personalities I see. Which one are you?

Social

  • Telling traits:
    Few things bring you more joy than a booked social calendar. As long as you're dashing off to dinners here and outings there, you're a happy camper.

  • Try:
    Book exercise classes. Every gym has a roster of classes a mile long with a little something for everyone. You can belly dance, kickbox, ride bikes - you name it. The class regulars become like old friends, and pretty soon you'll have an even wider social circle to go out with. Even if you don't belong to a gym, most towns have a community centre or adult education classes where you can sign up by the class.

Competitive

  • Telling traits
    Even if it's a game of Go Fish with your four-year-old nephew, you really want to win. You feel challenged if you see someone running at a faster pace on the treadmill next to yours.

  • Try:
    Join a league. From lacrosse to field hockey, there's an adult league battling it out every night of the week. If you're not a team-sport person, sign up for a 5K race or a triathlon.

Inquisitive

  • Telling traits:
    You're the one on the museum tour asking all the questions while the rest of the group is mindlessly nodding along. If there's something to learn, you're there.

  • Try:
    DVDs - lots of 'em. The nice thing about DVDs is that most come with many layers of explicit instruction. You can learn all kinds of new workouts, all without leaving your living room.

Meditative

  • Telling traits:
    You look inward more than outward, preferring to take the time to reflect and think before you speak. You crave all things peaceful, from steaming cups of tea to flickering candles.

  • Try:
    Yoga is obvious, but to get your heart rate up while centring your inner spirit, try repetitive-motion sports like swimming, jogging, cycling, kayaking or rowing. Studies show that the repetitive movements in these sports can put your brain in a Zen-like state.

Outdoorsy

  • Telling traits:
    You live in your L.L. Bean gear and always carry a backpack. You'd rather run in the rain than resort to the treadmill. If there's a mountain, lake, ocean or trail to explore somewhere, you're there.

  • Try:
    Hook up with a hiking, cycling, walking or running club. A group of outdoorsy kindred spirits will introduce you to new places and gear and provide a community for swapping stories.

Romantic

  • Telling traits:
    You like journaling, scrapbooking, decoupaging and antiquing. Chances are you care how your body looks, but you're not all that interested in traditional exercise.

  • Try:
    Dancing. There's nothing more romantic than dance, be it flamenco, salsa, ballroom, African, or even line dancing. You get to dress up and move to your favourite music.

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