It is probably obvious I have something of a crush on working out. I am proud I have reached a point where being fit is part of my lifestyle and that I see more and more results. But my crush with exercise goes beyond what I see in the mirror.
As important as the physical aspects are, I get the most out of the mental aspects. Working out mirrors what I do in coding in a couple ways. Both require staying on my grind almost every day. Both require the focus to push myself and resist complacency.
It’s easy to spend too much time tinkering with social media or pick the lighter weights. It’s harder to ignore distractions and focus on the task in front of me, whether it’s code or heaving kettlebells.
When I do manage to focus I benefit twice. Immediately I feel great because I challenged myself and moved my work or workout forward. Later, I realize I’m getting better at putting the work in every day and tuning out that which is not important to what I’m trying to do.
The TV infomercial benefits of working out, ripped extremities and a strong core, are a tertiary benefit to developers and creative types. Even the decrease in neck fat, the ability to lift heavy things, and reduced tendency to get winded are auxillary. The real benefit that people who make things get from working out are increased focus and discipline.