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Enneagram and Exercise | The Workout Issue | Understanding People #013

Oct 08, 2022
The Understanding People Newsletter, Enneagram and Eating, The Workout Issue, Enneagram and Health


Part 6 (and final one!) of the Personality Assessment Series on the Enneagram MBA Podcast 


When you think of the traits that make up your personality, are you viewing them as all the things that are "wrong with you?


Often times in my own personal experience and Enneagram teaching experience, the more we learn about ourselves it's the "negative" qualities we tend to focus on first. 


Inside this final episode of the [Personality Assessments at Work Series], you'll hear from Heidi Dexter, Type 7w8, patient care coordinator at Beauty Culture Med Spa, and self-growth student on how she's shifted her thinking over the years from "what's wrong with me" to seeing these parts of her personality as strengths - and some things for you to think about to do the same. 


[BACKSTORY ABOVE: We're laughing at how Heidi's daughter pointed out when she noticed the 7+8 type energy play out with Heidi's preference to have direct and to the point conversations - and will hurry things along and ask for the bottom line. In the interview, Heidi shares how that was a powerful realization for her to notice how her daughter has a completely different style. Knowing this, they both have a better understanding - more and patience - for one another :)]




"I know my type now, but what do I do with this information?"  

Right after, "How do I find my type?" and "What books do you recommend?", some version of the question above comes up.


Inside Episode 81 on the podcast this week, Heidi shared how she's applied what she's learned to her relationships at home and at work - including better understanding customers. She also shared how this information has allowed her to be more self-accepting and compassionate. 


To celebrate the Chicago Marathon happening tomorrow and to piggyback off the idea of real life application, we're taking the Enneagram to the kitchen. 


Last year, I partnered with Marine Corps Veteran and Certified Health Coach, Tomesha Campbell to come up with an Enneagram and Eating podcast episode. You can check it out here and below you'll find a fun summary of personality considerations to apply to your own exercise and nutrition plans - as it makes sense for you.


This is NOT health or medical advice, nor an implication that all types have the exact same challenges and experiences. Instead it's something to reflect on and consider to help you also be more accepting and compassionate to yourself as well in one area we all have a tendency to be very hard on ourselves - eating and exercise.



(11 years ago I ran my very first marathon - the Chicago Marathon. It was a life changing experience. I ended up doing one more, the Marine Corps Marathon, but this one I enjoyed and remember the most.)


💪 Body Types: 8 - 9 - 1 "What is there to do?"

The Pros of this Energy: These types are usually more self-trusting and in touch with their intuition and what their body needs (rest, fuel, a solid routine). They tend to be dialed in more to their physical sensations.

Heads Up: This Center is known for struggling with aggression and repression. When you know this you can take the time to reflect how this might be impacting your overall health.




Type 8: This type has the greatest energy of all so movement doesn’t tend to be an issue. It’s slowing down and recharging that can be more challenging. This doesn't have to be sitting on the coach, but things like getting outside to hike may do the trick. Also don't allow yourself to believe that going to the doctor is weakness - be intentional about applying the same level of passion to your health as you do work.


Type 9: Nines tend to go along with what everyone else wants, so give yourself a chance to explore new activities and discover what you truly like (and what you don’t!) 


Type 1: You’re great with a routine, so continue to leverage that strength, but give yourself a break when the exact plan doesn’t unfold and you miss a day or “cheat” on your meal plan.



  • 🔨 Bring the Enneagram to a team retreat or company holiday party with a Better Together or Selling with Personality workshop here. 
  •  ☕Use the Enneagram in your side hustle or career change here.
  • 🎤 Host an Enneagram topic at your fall conference or 2023 event with topics like The Ways We Lead  here. 
  • 🎁 Give a gift with personality. Share an "Enn Focus" Enneagram session gift card with a co-worker, friend, or family member here. 


🧠 Head Types: 5 - 6 - 7 "What do I think?"


The Pros of this Energy: These types have a tendency to live much of life in their heads, which in this situation comes in handy as they research, analyze, experiment, and plan their health and nutrition path.

Heads Up: Sometimes with these types it's like being a brain that the body carries around and they can tune out to feelings and intuition. Exercise and mindful eating can help you bring the other two Centers (Body and Heart) into the mix.




Type 5: This type is going to have allll the gear and tech they could possibly need to have a great workout experience. Just be careful not to get so wrapped up in research you forget to actually get out there and use it!


Type 6: We all can be guilty of analysis paralysis, but Sixes can reeeally struggle with it thanks to their inner committee giving them all kinds of options and ideas for exercise, new gear, or supplements to explore. Like a Five, Sixes can get caught up in looking into and then thinking about the best workout, shoes, route, trail, etc. and never end up getting out, so just being aware of this can get you going with something to try for now.


Type 7: While a healthy dose of routine and discipline can help a Seven keep up with their health and wellness, Sevens thrive in new experiences and adventures so look to add in a destination race or new type of workout to the mix.


❤️ Heart Types: 2 - 3 - 4 "How do I feel?"


The Pros of this Energy: These types tend to be really in tune with how they’re feeling, which can be very helpful in identifying what's actually going on with them and what they need.

Heads Up: As they can have these intense feelings, it's also important to pay attention to when emotional eating is occurring and when food is being used to cope.




Type 2: To keep their momentum going, it can be a great idea for this type that thrives on connection to grab a running partner, gym buddy, or even a virtual accountability friend.


Type 3: This type is the ultimate goal-setter, so continue to make sure you're working towards something meaningful AND see how it feels just to do something for the fun of it without tracking any performance data.


Type 4: Like the Sevens, Fours can benefit from some routine and structure but too much of it is draining. They can use their creative eye to spot a new type of workout or ensure the location they're going to aligns with their vibe and draws them in to come back again.


As always, all of this information is coming from my perspective of what I read and the experiences I have with others. I know you have your own, so if there's anything you'd add or think I got wrong, I want to continue learning about each type, so let me know! 


If you happen to be running Chicago this weekend - good luck! I'd love to hear how it goes! 

Either way, rooting for you with whatever big goals you have coming up


Sarah - Enneagram MBA




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