Exercise Is Like Marmite: You Either Love It Or Hate It. But Why?

Exercise. It’s a bit like marmite. You either love it or hate it. But why?

For most people, exercise is a necessary evil. It’s pain that they must endure so that the rest of the time they can feel healthy, vibrant and alive. Without exercise, it’s all too easy to put on weight, get depressed, and generally feel rotten.

But for some, the act of exercise itself is a positive experience. People who love training still feel the burn, but for some reason, they don’t mind putting themselves through it, day after day. What’s going on?

Check out the following reasons why some people just LOVE exercising, while others can’t stand it.

People Who Love Exercise Embrace The Outdoors

Being outside feels good. As busy worker bees, we spend the majority of our lives indoors, pushing carts, tapping at computers, packing boxes and painting walls. But we evolved in an environment where most, if not all of our time was spent in the open air, enjoying nature. Our modern lives are now so far removed from that biological ideal that we don’t get enough of it in our regular lives.

People who love exercise, however, often use training as an opportunity to be in calm, beautiful natural surroundings. It’s not so much the exercise that they love, but rather where they are while they’re doing it. The beauty of their environment makes physical activity all the more pleasurable.

People Who Love Exercise Don’t Pressure Themselves With Goals


The first thing a personal trainer will ask a new client when they sign up is “what are your goals?” Usually, it’s some combination of losing weight, toning up, or getting bigger muscles. But rarely is the goal “to enjoy exercise.” Arguably, enjoying being physically active is the most critical element of any training programme. It’s what makes it sustainable – something that you’ll want to do for decades to come. But it’s not something that’s ever talked about during most training sessions or fitness programmes. All that matters are the external goals  – like weight loss – and not the internal motivations which drive it. That’s wrong. And it’s why most people never develop exercise as a lifelong habit. It’s not nice forcing yourself to do something you don’t want to do, day after day, week after week.

People Who Like Exercise Go Easy On Themselves

The way your body feels and responds to exercise varies from day to day. Some days you want to exercise as hard as you can – usually when you’ve had a lot of sleep and good food. But on others, when you’re feeling depleted, you want to go easy on yourself.

The problem for many people is that they believe the mantra “go hard or go home.” Yes, working out hard can yield positive results, but going all out when you feel physically drained isn’t a good idea. It trains your body to avoid exercise for fear of becoming even more depleted, sapping your motivation.

People who love exercise take it easy. If they’re not feeling it, they give themselves a break and trust that their energy will return for future sessions.

People Who Love Exercise Share Their Passion With Others

People who love to work out can rarely keep their love of their hobby to themselves. Instead, they want to share it with anyone and everyone who will listen. One of the ways that they do this is by taking courses, like the OriGym Level 4 PT Course, so that they can teach others the basics and encourage them to achieve their fitness goals. No personal trainer chooses a career in fitness because they want a solid career trajectory: they do it because they have a love of fitness and want to share it.

People Who Love Working Out Exercise In A Way That Feels Good To Them

All our bodies are different. We all have varying strengths and weaknesses. Some of us are naturally better adapted to long-distance running while others prefer training that involves explosive movements. People who love exercise don’t do what they think they’re “supposed” to do – they stick with what feels good. If running on a treadmill for 60 minutes feels good, they’ll do that. If throwing a medicine ball feels, good, then they’ll do that. You get the picture.

People Who Love Working Out Don’t Sweat The Numbers


It can become easy to become obsessed with how much weight you lift on the bench press or how fast you can run 10k on a treadmill. But people who love working out don’t usually pay much attention to the numbers. Instead, they just enjoy the experience, push themselves if necessary, and trust that their bodies will adapt to the training over time.

People who like to workout also have a healthy habit of reframing their progress in different ways if they don’t see increases in the traditional metrics. If progress stops on the bench, they’ll measure it in other ways, such as improvements in their mobility or health.

People Who Love Exercise Eat Well

If you eat junk all day long and then go to the gym, you’ll feel rough. Because exercise causes pain, you’ll naturally conclude that exercise is “bad,” “evil” or painful. But if you take a closer look, you’ll soon discover that it’s not the exercise itself that’s the problem, but what you’re eating before and after.

Max Pixel

When you eat a bad diet, you decrease the effectiveness with which your body can deliver cells the nutrients they need. The result of this is shortness of breath, pain in the chest, aching limbs and generally feeling rotten. Eating poorly reduces your capacity for exercise, both physically and psychologically. It’s a significant burden.

But if you switch up your diet for a couple of weeks, you’ll soon notice the difference. Throw out all your packaged food and junk in your refrigerator and replace with whole grains, beans, fruit and veggies. Within a short amount of time, you’ll find your fitness improve naturally, and that exercise is a pleasant experience.

Sarah x



  1. 10/05/2019 / 14:32

    I used to enjoy exercise a lot. Was a gym member, played Badminton each week. I loved that exhilarating feeling you get after exercising. Once I initially damaged my back, 30 years ago, I was no longer able to do any of it. Irony is, I damaged it using a new piece of gym equipment that was for strengthening your back – go figure! I think it’s all about find the right balance for yourself with regards to exercise, eating healthy etc as everyone is very different. 🙂

    Sarah 🌺 || Boxnip || Latest Post

  2. 10/05/2019 / 16:14

    Excellent post! 😊
    I used to be really into fitness and exercising but never stuck with it.
    My diet is a lot healthier now than it was so I just need to find the motivation again!

    Love Lozza xo

  3. Sarah Mark
    12/05/2019 / 12:04

    I used to exercise 5 days a week and I absolutely loved it and then I had a few personal life changes and I stopped going and now I find it so hard to get back into it. I am trying not to compare what I do now to what I done back then when I was much fitter but it is so hard and just gets me down. For example I used to swim 60 lengths (roughly 1 mile) every-time I went and now I swim 20 and instead of feeling happy I swam 20 I think I used to be able to swim 60 its so disheartening, but I will keep persevering and I will get back to 60 lengths.

  4. 13/05/2019 / 19:31

    I find a long walk always helps, just completely resets my mind xx

  5. 07/08/2019 / 11:55

    Thanks for the insights. This article is very helpful.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.