13 People Reveal the One Thing That Finally Made Them Love Exercise

If you aren’t passionate about your workouts, you won’t last. These people reveal what keeps them excited to exercise day after day, week after week.

She started walking with baggage

Danielle Underwood LuipersbeckCourtesy Danielle Underwood Luipersbeck

Walking is more popular than running, according to the American Heart Association. And Danielle Luipersbeck, a certified wellness coach and personal trainer, found a way to make walking burn as many calories: a Goruck Challenge. The idea is to walk with a pack (rucksack) on your back. “This is what inspired me to move off the couch. Rucking is a training technique involving wearing a weighted pack. The Goruck Light Challenge was just so different. I had previously tried Zumba, walking, and step aerobics, but I never left any of those classes feeling strong,” she says. “The Goruck event is led by a special forces cadre. I knew I would have to push myself beyond my comfort zone, and this type of challenge excited me. I was approaching 40 and I wanted to do a physical endurance challenge that intimidated me.” In case you needed a few more reasons to work out, check out these 6 ways exercise makes your brain better.

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His device stood the test of time

Jim DailakisCourtesy Jim Dailakis

For actor, comedian, and writer Jim Dailakis, the Bullworker changed his mind about exercise. This portable isometric workout tool was the first exercise equipment that really worked for him. “When I was in my early teens, I was out of shape and extremely weak. I had tried so many different methods of exercise that didn’t work,” he says. “Some of the reasons I love the Bullworker is that it didn’t require as much effort, a gym membership, or expensive equipment. Working out with the Bullworker for 20 minutes a day is all I need to increase strength and muscle size. It firms you up, increases your strength, and improves muscle size in two weeks. It worked beautifully. I still have it; I’ve had it for over 35 years and it still works!” Check out these 11 workout moves you can do with everyday items at home.

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Yoga class was the answer

Beth Shankle AndersonCourtesy Beth Shankle Anderson

Beth Shankle Anderson‘s quest for fitness led her to the meditative yet demanding practice of yoga—and all she needed to get started was a yoga mat. She tells Reader’s Digest: “I started practicing yoga 15 years ago before I began law school. The benefits were immediate! I felt calmer, stronger, and healthier overall. I love the camaraderie in my yoga class, which helps keep me motivated. No other type of workout kept my attention. I didn’t exercise consistently before yoga because I thought I was too busy. Now yoga class is a priority.” Want to try yoga for yourself? Check out these 13 ways you could improve your workout.

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A running group turned drudgery into fun

Rebecca HoranCourtesy Brightroom Photography

Rebecca Horan, a brand strategy consultant, says that running was exactly what she needed in her life as a new parent. “As a sleep-deprived new mom, I could never seem to find the time to exercise. I looked thin, but I had no stamina and I had lost all my muscle tone,” she says. “Tired of feeling this way, I set a resolution in January 2007 that I was going to turn things around. I joined a group running program with the Running Center in New York City. Having the camaraderie of other runners was exactly what I needed to rekindle my love of exercise.” Make sure you stay hydrated while you run; carry a bottle or try this clever item. Find out the 9 ways that starting a running workout changes your body.

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