This man guarantees to get you enthusiastic about exercising

Thirty minutes passed before I asked bodybuilder Bevan James Eyles what I really wanted to know, which are some variations on the following.

When it’s 5:45 a.m. and the rain is pounding on the roof and the bed is warm, and you haven’t slept until late, and you have a big day ahead, and you’re not sure where your sneakers are, go Do you ever hit snooze and think you’ll get to that exercise later?

Exercise: ever just feel like, no?

“I do – don’t get me wrong, but what I have developed are really good strategies,” says Eyles.

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Support me while I say Eyles has the fitness certification of someone who really knows their way in the gym: he’s a running coach, an award-winning fitness trainer , an Iron Man triathlete, a marathon runner.

He’s not always like this.

Eyles, 44, used to exercise to pull himself out of a pit when he was 20 years old. Eyles says he used drugs and alcohol when he dropped out of high school. After a particularly difficult LSD ride, he says he suddenly sees himself for real – a “loser who doesn’t go fast”. He decided to give up drugs and exercise. “It wasn’t a difficult time for me because it was so empowering,” Eyles admits.

It’s a fitness CV that’s both intimidating and off-putting to many people, and Eyles admits that exercising has never really been that hard for him (keep it up with me) — not when, anyway. Talk about motivation to get started. He likes the idea that he can walk out the door and go for a three-hour jog. But – and this is something Eyles realized and spent a year writing about – it’s hard for a lot of people.

Data shows that nearly half of adults do not exercise, little or not enough exercise each week. While a large number of us (about 14% of us, pre-pandemic) have a gym membership, not many of us regularly cross the threshold – some in we are not.

Bevan James Eyles is a top fitness trainer who has written a book that promises to get people excited about exercise.

Peter Meecham / Stuff

Bevan James Eyles is a top fitness trainer who has written a book that promises to get people excited about exercise.

And this is before we are all threatened by a virus that sucks the air out of us and locks us in our homes, before the economic downturn means many are struggling to survive. and put the move last on our to-do list.

Eyles thought he could help. It was the psychology behind our poor mobility that Eyles channeled his energy into. It’s his way of developing himself and others a life that, while involving oddball sleep, means you also know you’ll be exercising at 80.

“Tell me about your exercise routine,” he says. “Tell me about your fitness life.”

I told Eyles about the leak in the bathroom that kept me up late on a Tuesday night, how I would run out of breath to pack and eat lunch to wake up at 5:30 a.m. the next morning for yoga. About my decision to take an afternoon class instead, but it’s very likely that the realities of the day will keep me from hitting the 5 p.m. yoga studio but on the couch instead.

And Eyles tells me that’s okay because someone who’s built exercise into their routine knows they’ll eventually get back to yoga – if not today, maybe tomorrow.

But for those whose tomorrow turns into next week, and then into the next month, those are the people Eyles wants to help. In his new book – I Will Make You Passionate about Exercise – Eyles tells the story of a radiant moment when he realized that the fitness industry was failing everyone, that he had built himself a career he successfully promoted in the right people (including himself).


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The fitness book genre is a crowded space, so are workout apps, fitness programs that promise to turn you into a lean, mid-weight exercise machine, or any kind of fitness marketing. Which exercise is usually aimed at people who have been and are interested in exercise. Eyles realizes that there isn’t much out there for those who are trying and failing at the start.

“It was a completely different journey – the obstacles they had to face,” Eyles said. “It’s not that they haven’t exercised, they’ve tried and failed all the time. They had a really bad experience. My question to myself is, how do you get someone who’s no good, has a history of failure, is insecure, to a place where they know they’re going to do it forever? “

With that newly formed purpose, Eyles formed a running group, trying to train people into their first 5km. He was horrified that none of them made it. He tried again and had a much better success rate. His book recounts the lessons he learned from those groups, and he started from the very beginning – putting his shoes in and out the door.

Learning to prioritize simply getting started, even if it’s just a five-minute walk, is key to teaching people they can succeed, he says, because you’re not learning the techniques in the first place. , you are learning how to prepare yourself for the move.

“All you’re trying to learn is packing up the night before, planning a night of the week where you know you’ll be successful or you’ll have the energy. At this stage, the training must be extremely easy both physically and mentally.

“Most people go down a road that’s too hard, too stressful, they feel like failures, they don’t feel like they’re succeeding – so why would you go back if that’s so frustrating, not having fun and you feel like a failure? “

Eyles says that building a framework for just getting started opens the door for people to really enjoy exercise first, and his clients will often tell him that incorporating exercise into their lives, whether it’s dancing, running, or lifting weights, will pave the way to a life more enjoyable than the one that made them up. would like to exercise.

“The problem with exercise is, people want to sell images. It’s stupid…but, that’s what people buy. [But] it ignores a lot of other benefits – connecting with people in a healthy environment, experiencing life, being in nature. “

Slowly building a framework that gets you to a place where you’re moving in an interesting way, with a community of people you like, maybe including a guide or a leader, will motivate you.

“The first step is to walk out the door with the right attitude.”

I Will Make You Fitness Passion (Mary Egan Publishing), by Bevan James Eyles, released Monday, July 4. RRP $37.

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