By Denise Teh
Introvert or extrovert, Type A or Type B; we all know which camp we belong too. But how many of us are aware of our fitness personality? Studies by the American Council on Exercise have shown people are more likely to enjoy, be successful at and most importantly, stick to an exercise activity when it aligns with their personalities. Here, I outline five workout personalities, and highlight which styles of exercise are best suited to each. Whether you’re an introverted Planner that favours solo activities, or a risk-seeking Adventurer who loves being outdoors, this guide will help you find your perfect workout match.
1. The Go-Getter
Who you are: You live your life at 100mph and are always looking for the next challenge. For you, the only way is up, and you thrive on competition and success. Go-Getters are intense individuals and tend to be externally motivated, therefore, respond well to specific training plans to reach personal goals, such as improving fitness or losing weight. Types of exercise activity that suit Go-Getters include high intensity training, cardio conditioning and competitive sports. These individuals are highly motivated, and are likely to excel in their chosen activity because of this. Their need for results can often leave Go-Getters impatient and frustrated, so a very specific, time-sensitive and action-oriented approach to exercise is recommended.
Favourite workouts: HIIT, spinning, triathlon
2. The Planner
Who you are: Consider yourself a self-confessed control freak who loves predictability and routine? Then you are most likely a Planner. Often more on the introvert side of the spectrum, this personality–type enjoys physical activities where there is an emphasis on mind-body connection, involve little risk and are inherently self-focused. Indeed, Planners tend to favour solo activities and the list of suitable exercise can extend to anything that can be enjoyed alone, from yoga to running. Planners tend to gravitate towards familiar and comfortable exercises, therefore, incorporating new techniques and challenges into their routine is key.
Favourite workouts: Yoga, Pilates, running
3. The Social Butterfly
Who you are: These people could make friends with a brick wall, is happiest when in a crowd and gets invited to every party in town. When it comes to exercising, it’s all about the social experience, and breaking a sweat while having fun with others is far more important than the workout itself. Social Butterflies tend to embody a positive energy and have a flexible approach to exercise, therefore, are keen to try new things – so long as it involves social interaction. Needless to say, group fitness classes and team sports are best suited to these individuals, especially if they are fun and energetic. Social Butterflies also tend to have a competitive streak, and are often motivated by external factors, such as achievement, recognition, and praise.
Favourite workouts: Beach volleyball, fitness boot camps, racquet sports
Top 3 healthy holidays for Social Butterflies: Spain: The Body Camp; St Lucia: BodyHoliday September Solos; Greece: Wildfitness Crete
4. The Adventurer
Adventurers have a zest for life and an innate need to explore. Inherently spontaneous, they’ll try anything new; the riskier or wackier the better! They’re not afraid of new challenges and this extends to their health and fitness choices. Whether ziplining through forests or white-water rafting, Adventurers live off the adrenaline rush and often favour outdoor activities. While they are determined to get results, Adventurers tend to be impulsive and find it difficult to maintain a prescribed fitness regime. These individuals require plenty of variety and new challenges to keep them motivated.
Favourite workouts: Mountain trekking, surfing, canyoning
5. The Chameleon
Who you are: The Chameleon’s fitness personality, like your regular personality, has multiple facets. Perhaps one day you find yourself feeling like The Adventurer, then after your adrenaline high you want to turn your attention inwards like The Planner. You find yourself both introverted and extroverted, optimist and pessimist, depending on your mood and your environment. You love building up a sweat and making new friends in a group class, as much as you enjoy turning your attention inwards while practising yoga. They say variety is the spice of life and for the Chameleon, this rings most true, with a balanced and varied exercise regime being essential.
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