It doesn’t quite sound right, does it?

We’re brainwashed into believing we must always work ‘out’, it’s even got its own word. Working out is synonymous with

We go to the gym for a workout. We get frustrated with ourselves when we miss a workout and we really must get that workout done this week.

What if I told you working ‘out’ was only half the job done? We place so much emphasis on expending energy that we forget about creating it. Simple concept.

That’s why when we’ve finished throwing the iron around the gym we feel shattered. It’s why we feel exhausted after a long run and nauseous at the end of a spin class.

We’re depleting energy. Our main motivation behind this is to ‘burn’ calories but really we’re just burning ourselves out. We should workout frequently but to avoid the associated burnout we also need to work ‘in’. 

We need to balance our workouts with exercises that cultivate life force energy, also known as chi.

Life is all about balance. The yin and the yang. Exercise is no different.

Qi Gong, or Chi Kung, consists of very simple flowing moves and meditations that boost the energy levels in our body without a can of Red Bull in sight.

If we think of our body as a battery, Qi Gong is a way of charging it up. Qi Gong actually means internal energy circulation and was developed by Taoist monks. 

Chi, or life energy, is the foundation of Chinese medicine and without an abundance of chi in our bodies we cannot survive or be healthy. 

If we think of chi as a candle, if it keeps burning quickly it will blow out sooner than expected. 

Qi Gong is based on Chinese medicine so every move you do has a purpose. These moves focus on the channels that conduct energy throughout the body called meridians. 

If these channels are blocked then our body does not function properly and disease manifests. 

Qi Gong opens and clears these energy channels so we can feel at our most

The moves in Qi Gong massage our internal organs and stimulate them, making the organs function at their very best. 

The truth is, we only think about our organs when we are sick and by then it’s usually too late.

The whole principle of practising Qi Gong is a preventative measure for disease. 

Regular practice will help you understand your own energy and the energy in your surroundings. You’ll be more likely to steer clear of the energy vampires in your life and hopefully
appreciate the benefits of balancing out your exercising and feel even stronger and more energized for your work out.

Give it a go and start working ‘in’ if you work ‘out’.

Colin Ayliffe is a certified personal trainer and holistic lifestyle coach with over 10 years experience in training clients. He graduated from the University of Surrey with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Science and is also a CHEK practitioner, golf biomechanic and is accredited by the
National Academy of Sports Medicine.

Colin now blogs at