Reframing perceptions about exercise

By Meghan Feir

With obesity affecting more than 78 million adult Americans in 2013, there is no question a need for practicing healthier habits has arisen.

Emily Bublitz, a Dragon Mentor and senior at MSUM, will be showcasing her presentation “Move It and Lose It: Can Reframing Exercise Increase One’s Intentions to Work Out?” at this year’s Student Academic Conference on April 15. In her presentation, she will use the theory of planned behavior to support her main argument that retraining the way your brain perceives exercise can support healthy endeavors in the long run.

With a passion for running, Bublitz ran three half marathons amidst her busy schedule last year, so this topic is a natural fit for the senior. “There are so many positives and benefits from exercising. From your health to your emotions, it just has an overall positive effect.”

During the presentation, Bublitz will give college undergraduates reframed information to study the effect of temporal framing on exercise intentions. By taking the theory of planned behavior and applying it to a person’s exercising habits, Bublitz hopes to demonstrate reframing how someone perceives increments of exercise, from hours to minutes, will keep them motivated and help them continue a consistent workout routine.

Although Bublitz will be using exercise as her test field in this study, the theory of planned behavior can be applied to everyday life. “You can take this theory and apply it in various settings – in health communication, in advertising,” Bublitz said. “Whether it’s studying for a test, getting the 4.0 you’ve always wanted, graduating from college, or becoming healthier, it’s really practical. By reframing a message, you can do what you’ve always wanted to do. You just have to look at it in a different way.”

For more information on the Student Academic Conference, visit