Make working out more satisfying with mindfulness

Do you have a favorite MOXIE class? Does some exercise feel pleasurable and others drudgery? Understanding how to make exercise more enjoyable can help the most unenthusiastic exerciser start enjoying their workouts. One way to make exercise more satisfying is by integrating mindfulness.

Being mindful during your workout can help you:

  • Develop a stronger awareness of your body and what you are accomplishing.
  • Achieve better results since you will improve your movement and the quality of your workout.
  • Gain more satisfaction since you will be focused on doing your best.
  • Experience the state of flow or “being in the zone”.

Flow and being in the zone is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the process of the activity. In essence, flow is characterized by complete absorption in what one does.

According to Kalliopi-Eleni Tsafou, a Marie Curie Research Fellow at Utrecht University who led a recent study about mindfulness and exercise satisfaction published in The Journal of Health Psychology, being aware and in the moment during exercise also means experiencing, fully, your twinging muscles, declining pace, and hunger. These aspects of exercise should be more tolerable with mindfulness, Ms. Tsafou said. As she and her colleagues wrote in the study, mindfulness “facilitates the acceptance of things as they occur,” enabling us to “accept negative experiences and view them as less threatening.”

Tips to improving mindfulness during your MOXIE workout:

  • Arrive with a purpose. For example, holding plank without breaking, strengthen your muscles, challenge yourself.
  • Remember why you are exercising and focus on how this workout fits into your health goals.
  • Slow down and check your form, take mental inventory of your body and how you are feeling.
  • Breathe rhythmically. Exhale your breath on the effort in a movement to contract your abs and keep oxygen flowing.
  • Finish strong. Practicing this mantra at the end of a movement or at the end of the workout forces the focus on the last few repetitions. Give them your best effort!


February 2015, New York Times. Mindfulness and satisfaction in physical activity: A cross-sectional study in the Dutch population. click




DISCLAIMER: The information on this site is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content, including text, graphics, images and information, contained on or available through this web site is for general information purposes only.