The S.T.U.C.K. Method

Five Simple Steps to Emotional Well-Being

STUCK on I Despise Jogging!

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As a kid, I used to exercise a lot.

But, I didn’t call it that.

I called it playing out in the backyard,

or dancing in the basement,

or playing basketball,

or fishing for pennies at the bottom of a pool.

I certainly never called those things exercise.

They weren’t things I had to do.

I did them because they were fun!

Because that’s what kids do!

And no matter what form of so-called exercise I did, I was in heaven when I was in it.

I loved the feeling of sweating.

I loved the high of getting my heart rate up.

I loved the feeling afterwards of being tired and hungry.


I live on a small kibbutz in the middle of nowhere, with no gym nearby (where I would otherwise swim and take yoga classes).  And, I can’t exactly say I feel uninhibited enough to just go outside and play on the playground alongside the other kibbutz kids.

(Which I kind of feel like doing some days.)

Therefore, I feel limited with my exercise options (because yoga, while I’m passionate about it, doesn’t do the same for me as aerobic exercise does – even though I do maintain somewhat of a yoga practice).

exercise shoesSo, I took up jogging a few years ago.

Because I had to choose something to get my heart rate up.

But I hated every minute of it.

I hated putting on running shoes.

I hated being cold when I went outside at 5:30 AM and then having to strip down to a tank top when I got hot and then having to carry my sweatshirt while attempting to failing to jog up and down hills.

And I hated realizing how little time I could actually jog without stopping.

(It was like 8 minutes tops.)

So, I took up walking.

Which, with captivating podcasts to listen to (thank you, On Being and the Israel Hour!), I found enjoyable.

I cherished the stillness at dawn,

the majestic view of the surrounding mountains and water,

and saying good morning to the horses and cows.

But, it wasn’t enough.

I wasn’t getting my heart rate up enough and I wasn’t sweating.

It wasn’t elevating my mood.

I mean, maybe it could’ve been enough, if I had pushed myself.

But, at that point, why not just go back to jogging?

Because I despise jogging!

With a passion!

And I’m frustrated that I have no other options!


It dawned on me that I was stuck on all of this while watching my daughter passionately dance around in the living room the other day (she does this several times a week) with her favorite music accompanying her in the background.

It is obvious that when she dances, she’s in heaven.

Just like I was when I was a kid.



Stop. And take a breath.

T Tell.  I’m feeling frustrated that I don’t have a regular exercise program that I enjoy.

UUncover. Why are my beliefs?  I believe that there is no other effective way to exercise on this kibbutz besides running and jogging. I believe exercising is a necessary part of mental and physical well-being.  I believe exercising should be fun. I believe we are not meant to suffer in this world.  I believe I shouldn’t despise the exercise I am doing. I believe that if I despise the exercise I’m doing, I won’t keep at it. I believe jogging is boring and not very motivating.


Consider.  I can challenge myself by considering that there is another way of exercising on this kibbutz; that I can find a way that is actually fun; that dancing could be that way.  I could consider finding a dance class nearby; that dancing in my living room, just like my daughter, could be something I can take on; I could consider dancing with friends and even hold regular dance parties on my roof (though, my neighbors may not agree). I could consider dancing while taking breaks from work. (Don’t worry, I work from home. No one’s looking.) I could consider dancing while cleaning the house, cooking, and more.

So, I chose to dance.

I just put on YouTube one day, searched for Latin music (my favorite), cleared the living room, and started dancing. (I even closed my eyes at one point and pretended I was being led and turned in inconceivable ways by some professional dancer from “Dancing with the Stars”!  Arriba!!!)

And there I was.


And getting my heart rate up.

And enjoying every minute.


How did I not think of this before?

And I said to myself that it’s oK that I got stuck on despising jogging.  Look what came of it! K


Author: Shira Taylor Gura

Well-Being Coach, Podcast Host, Author of the award winning book, Getting unSTUCK: 5 Simple Steps to Emotional Well-Being.

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