Creating and implementing consistent exercise habits with today’s lifestyles
If it weren’t for the fact that the TV set and the refrigerator are so far apart, some of us wouldn’t get any exercise at all. – Joey Adams
Knowing what to do is one thing, doing it is another. With today’s busy schedules, there are so many people, including me, who struggle from time to time to motivate themselves to exercise regularly.
Maybe you establish a nice routine, then life gets in the way and your routine falls by the wayside. Guess what? That’s going to happen to everyone, so you have to be able to refocus and get back to it. Habits are everything when it comes to exercise and good health in general.Habits are everything when it comes to exercise and good health. Click To Tweet
Here are several tips to stay motivated and stick with your program:
- Things that get measured get done. This is a human principle. This is why a kindergarten teacher keeps a chart and gives gold stars for achievement. This is why we keep score. Establishing a goal and measuring towards the progress of reaching that goal is a motivator. Some people need very aggressive improvement goals, and others need simple participation or completion goals. A simple goal to work out three times per week for a month can go a long way. Then build in a reward for your accomplishment.
- Join an online or offline group to help you stay motivated. There are lots of them available depending on your favorite activity. I use the My Fitness Pal app on my phone to track both calories and exercise. I can invite friends to connect with me for accountability. It is easy and fun.
- Post your goal someplace visible. Post your goal on your bathroom mirror, or on the wallpaper of your phone or computer (or both), in you car, or on your desk at work. Seeing your goal several times a day keeps it top-of-mind.
- Find a workout buddy. Nothing works better than finding a partner who will join you on your workout journey. It is a lot more fun and you can hold each other accountable.
- Make it pleasurable. Working out and staying healthy should not be a chore, it should be a pleasure. There is a myriad of exercise options and finding one that you enjoy is important. My primary cardio activity is stationary bicycling. I enjoy this type of exercise because I can catch up on my reading or the news while I am working out. My wife enjoys walking because she can walk with a friend and they can visit as they walk while building a consistent routine.
- Reach out to a coach or trainer. Many people feel they need a coach or personal trainer to just tell them what to do and when to do it. That way they just have to show up and not “think” too much about all the mechanics of it. If that’s what you prefer, go for it!
- Take a class. Similar to the tip listed above, attending a class works for a lot of people. The instructor adds variety, personality, and fun. You just need to show up. And you can make new friends along the way, too!
- Have a powerful reason and write it down. I am middle-aged and want to stay healthy for my family and my grandchildren. I see many people in their sixties and seventies who are spending most of their time and energy (and money) dealing with their health issues. I do not want to be like that. No matter how healthy you are, as you age, you develop some health issues. However, I certainly want to do everything possible to minimize any issues and do my part to stay healthy.
- Make a public commitment. Be bold. Share your goals and progress with others. Blog about it or keep folks posted on your journey with Facebook. Making a public commitment means you are truly committed and you want to let others know you are committed. Sharing your story with others will not only help hold you more to be more accountable, but inspire your friends and family to commit to a healthy lifestyle, too!
- Be positive. Even when you have setbacks, and you will, think positive. Realize the setback is temporary and get back to it. Talk with yourself, don’t just listen to yourself. Positive self-talk is much better than negative self-talk.
We all struggle to stay motivated to exercise from time to time in our busy lives. Think about and implement these tips to get back into a consistent results-driven routine. Stay focused on your goals. Stay healthy. You can do it! I’m cheering for you! ?