Bringing Back the Lost Art of "Play"


Growing up all the kids in the neighborhood all like to just go outside and “play”. Usually nothing very structured. Found out whoever was around and then decided what we all felt like playing.

Some days it was whiffle ball, others kickball, maybe a little street hockey, just riding the bikes around the neighborhood or going to the neighbor’s pool to swim.

I was out playing some Frisbee golf the other day (which was actually my 2nd time), and this thought came to me:

“You know what…I have no desire to ever step foot into a gym again in my life…but I love to be outside and do things every day…so maybe I just need more ‘play’ time“.

That is my advice for most everyone out there, make more time to just go “play”.

Why are we spending so much effort running on a machine with a moving belt or pedaling away on a stationary object…when we could do all the same things outside and enjoy it more?

There is a funny saying by David Walters that goes:

An hour of basketball feels like 15 minutes.  An hour on a treadmill feels like a weekend in traffic school.

How true is that? Running on a treadmill for 10-15 minutes is torture for me…but I can go play an hour of something outside that involves running around and time just flies (or skate around playing ice hockey for 90 minutes and love every minute of it). But 5 minutes on a machine and I am already starting to think time is slowing down on purpose.

Look at the simple benefits of just going to “play”:

  • Use your muscles (duh, I know), increase circulation and all the health benefits from it
  • Burn some additional calories that can come from fat stores
  • Relaxes and takes your mind off modern day issues stressing you out
  • Social interaction with other people (and the good feeling that comes from it)
  • Outside you get fresh air and Vit D from the sun (all free of charge!)
  • You will enjoy doing it more often (unlike who really wants to keep going to the gym all the time?)

Don’t make being active harder than it needs to be with complicated planned exercise formats. Go improvise, relax, grab a couple friends, have some fun, break a sweat and see all the benefits it can bring.

Life can be really simple sometimes, if we just allow it to be.

So make more time to go “play”, and leave all the other stress-inducing exercise obsessions/compulsions at home.

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