We often judge activities based on how much they can change us physically. However, when it comes to their mental effects, we rarely care.
I used to be a runner. Treadmill or no treadmill, rain or snow, I ran every day from 5:30 to 6:30 in the morning and I hated every minute of it. From the moment I tied my laces until my last mile, running scared me.
So, why did I do it?
I used to be a chubby kid. I was ‘that kid’ who deliberately tried to get sick for sports day. During college, every time I ran, I had billions of voices shunning me down. At times, I heard the voice of my soccer coach calling me a ’tractor’. Other times, it was my classmates commenting on my man boobs from the sideline as I struggled to finish the race.
So, to me, running during college was a way to prove something. It was unhealthy, but I had to do it to cope.
However, I realized that I had to let go. I had to grow. That is when I came across jumping rope.
It has been a year and a half and jumping rope didn’t only alter my physique, it has helped me develop my character as well, by teaching me lessons about life and fitness.
Here are some of them.
There are a handful of jumping rope benefits once you get the hang of the activity. If you’re just starting out, you may need some trial and error before you get the right form. That process requires patience and perseverance. There’s no place for ego.
I used to run despite hating it because I felt I had to prove something to someone. It was as if I was still competing with my friends in high school.
Because I failed multiple times before finally getting the right form, jumping rope made me realized that I was just competing with myself. I did not have to get better than anyone else- just myself.
And that change in mindset helped me optimize everything.
Failure helped me touch base with reality and develop patience. It killed all that toxic thoughts that were bottled up inside. This made consistency easier.
As my form started getting better, my ego got bigger, too. In the middle of my workout, I would often find myself thinking about how cool I looked.
And those were the times when the rope would get stuck between my legs. Reality would hit me, forcing me to focus on what I was actually doing.
Thus, jumping rope trained me to stay focused. My coordination got better and I experienced improved balance.
These things significantly changed the quality of my work.
3Reflecting on Failures
When we hit bottom, the obvious advice people give us is to try again. And, although that’s good, there’s something essential that we miss.
Reflecting on our failures.
What went wrong? Was it something out of control or something that can easily be changed?
Jumping rope is all about having the right form- knees bent, elbows drawn in and jumping no more than an inch.
Every time I fail at my routine, I’d reflect on whether it was due to a wrong form or lack of focus. After knowing what went wrong, I make the necessary adjustments and do it again until I get a more favorable result.
I’ve started applying this to the other areas of my life and it has optimized everything I do.
In a world that is so driven by accomplishments, we often lose sight of what is really important. A lot of us want more degrees, achievements and recognitions. Because we aspire to do so many things, we usually end up finishing nothing.
Think about how that applies to fitness. We have so many ways to get fit and, yet, most of us still fail to achieve our body goals.
As I got more acquainted with jumping rope, I started doing High Intensity Interval Training for thirty minutes every day. That’s it. No running or any other form of cardio.
This helped me gain clarity on what I really needed to do to accomplish my keystone tasks. It included practicing Intermittent Fasting, eating the right foods, hitting my macro numbers, and giving my hundred and twenty percent during HIIT.
It turned out that the combination of HIIT workouts and intermittent fasting is exactly what I needed to get lean.
5Movement is Essential
Working out can mean effort and extra time. When you are not used to it, it’s easy to consider it as a burden, which leads to inconsistency.
As proof, just think about the people who refuse to work out just because they don’t have the time.
But, what if moving your body was essential? What if it was a requirement to living a healthy life?
After every HIIT session, I felt great from the inside. It’s as if my body was thanking me.
My exercise routines last for thirty minutes a day only. Since it was short, I felt motivated to start doing it consistently until I was able to see positive results.
This feeling and the results I got helped me learn an important lesson about our bodies: they are made to move.
Jumping rope helped me fall in love with fitness. Working out wasn’t something I had to do anymore- it’s something I want to do.
See Also: Finding your Fitness Passion
Over To You
Jumping rope benefits are endless. More than your body, you can also use it to train your mind.
This, however, is not a plea for you to go start jumping rope. Instead, it’s a plea for you to go explore the different ways you can help your body and mind. See what works for you and what doesn’t and adjust accordingly.