I'm not into the whole weight loss thing. I haven't known what my own weight was since I was eleven and my mom threw our scale in the garbage after I started weighing myself obsessively and crying about the results. I steadfastly refuse to give a shit what I weigh or what my body looks like by anyone's standards other than my own. That said, I want my body to actually, y'know, function. For that, I need to exercise.
Here's the problem - I really don't like exercising. I get bored almost immediately no matter what I'm doing. Sometimes, I can force myself through a yoga class or a jog around the park, but I spend the whole time wishing I was doing literally anything else.
Now, I exercise 2-4x a week, a major improvement over my previous average of almost never. This is at least partially thanks to anime.
If you're wondering how the hell watching TV can help anyone with their fitness routine, it works in two key ways - motivation and distraction.
Anime As Motivation
There's no way I'm ever going to be 1/100th as chiseled as All Might. I don't care enough about working to make that happen. That said, watching anime where the characters are clearly achieving their fitness goals does motivate me to hit the gym.
It's not just buff anime characters that get me to actually move my stupid body for once in my life - it's also anime characters who are passionate about a sport. When I watch Yowamushi Pedal, it gets me thinking I should probably get my bike tire fixed and then actually ride it somewhere. When I watch Yuri on Ice, it makes me feel like maybe I should dig my skates out of the closet and hit the rink. Sometimes, I actually do these things. I'm not good at any of these sports, but at least I'm slightly better than I would be if I never even tried.
Anime As Distraction
The other way that anime helps me exercise is by helping me forget I'm actually doing it. It's hard to care that you've been slamming away on an elliptical machine for forty minutes when you have to know what happens next in ERASED or My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU. The fact that I prefer subbed anime makes this work even better - I have to focus on reading instead of whatever tiredness or boredom I might be feeling. Watching anime while I work out means that I actually finish the work out instead of wandering off and doing something else.
Have you been able to use anime to help you achieve your goals, fitness or otherwise? If so, let us know! We'd love to hear from you.