In my view, there is one big problem with the fitness industry that can really affect how people see exercise and shape their goals.
How often have you heard the phrases 'no pain, no gain', 'if you're not sweating, you haven't worked hard enough' or 'even if it hurts, keep going through the pain'? These are probably things you hear fairly regularly in exercise classes but they can be dangerous to both body and mind.
The 'pain' mentality in exercise classes can be really damaging and in fact, could cause you injury if you pushed yourself too far. It's totally wrong to say that you are not achieving results or reaching your goals unless you are in pain or absolutely hanging out by the end of the session. Yes you can work hard, but pain doesn't equal good results and the success of your workout should not be measured by how much pain you experience during or after the session.
Fitness should not be about being in pain or for there to be an obsession about the aesthetic surrounding exercise. In fact, it should be about how you feel...how the exercise makes you feel, how you feel at the end and how you feel over time as you start to see results.
When thinking about exercise, it should be more about the feeling you get from the movement, instead of working towards an aesthetic. When it comes to Pilates (or any other form of exercise), the aim is for you to feel strong and empowered in your body! If your mind can feel more relaxed and stress free, then that's an added bonus.
In Pilates in particular, it's unlikely that you will leave covered in sweat every session. There are different levels of difficulty in Pilates but each movement is intended to be controlled and for you to develop a connection between the body and the mind. Anyone that has committed to a Pilates practice will tell you that they have seen positive results in the way that they feel and move.
Don't be fooled into the fitness myths of 'no pain, no gain' or be convinced that you have to be absolutely exhausted by the end of your session.
Think about your movement, make it exercise that you enjoy and think about how it makes you feel.
See you on the mats!