We all know we should exercise more, but it can be hard to make it a regular habit. We’ve all been there. We go to the gym, we work out for a week, and then life happens. Exercise slips away from us as fast as it arrived into our lives. Starting an exercise routine is hard enough, but sustaining one takes more than just willpower.
There are so many excuses: I don’t have the time, my kids take up too much time and energy, or I’m too tired after work to go for a run. But there’s no reason you can’t find 10-20 minutes in your day to fit at least some exercise into your routine! It might not seem like enough of an improvement at first, but small changes will add up over time. Exercise is proven to improve your fitness and help people live longer, healthier lives. But so many of us are too busy to make it a regular habit. We all have the same 24 hours in a day, so why is it that some people prioritise their health more than others.
Here are four steps that you can follow to make exercising more of a routine in your life instead of scrolling through Facebook or playing video games on your phone:
- Plan out what time you’ll work out and find an activity that will fit into your schedule;
- Learn to say “no” to things that you don’t want to do, so you have enough energy and time for working out;
- Be ready to fight off excuses by coming up with solutions beforehand; and finally
- Get started and celebrate all the small wins.
Let’s explore in more detail
4 Easy Steps to Make Exercise a Habit
Step 1 Create a Plan
Create a system that includes the elements that suit your lifestyle and then check off each exercise session as you complete it. Print yourself a calendar with at least three months of exercises on it so you know what to do when, and add your favourite exercises in. Mark any personal accomplishments such as increasing the weights you lift or hitting a certain distance with cardio. Remember to set realistic goals, such as 10 minutes of physical activity, five times a week. It is not necessary to start by exercising for hours — just try 10 minutes at first! Studies show people who take time for regular exercise enjoy increased energy levels and increased strength in total-body muscles along with improved sleep quality and positive mental attitudes!
Step 2 Stay Motivate
Exercise is key in sticking with any health plan, and that’s why when you’re feeling unmotivated it can be hard to get yourself there. Here are a few techniques for getting through the exercise slump:
Think of your workout as your time to take care of yourself. Treat it like a necessary part of your day, such as brushing your teeth or washing you hair. Obligations we all have to do to take care of our selves. Think about how much better you’ll feel after exercising, and for how great you’ll look too! Create a little pre-workout ritual before hitting the gym or going on a run; this may include things like using essential oils or listening to music that gets you pumped.
Step 3 Find a WorkOut Buddy
Working out with a partner or friend is one of the easiest and most effective ways to stay on track and combat boredom. Finding someone who’s about as active and motivated as you (or more motivated might help even more!)
Find someone who has similar goals to yours, such as weight-loss or strength/balance improvement; Drive together (and offer to pick up if necessary); Schedule workouts ahead of time; Arrange to meet at a certain time at the park or gym, so neither of you feel like you want to let the other down.
Step 4 Celebrate the Small Successes
Get the celebration mindset of congratulating yourself for any level of progress- no matter how small. You did 5 minutes, great, congratulate yourself on those 5 minutes rather than beating yourself up that it was only 5 minutes! 5 minutes is better than nothing. Studies have shown that people who are “determined” enough to exercise (no matter how long) when they’re just not in the mood will reap significantly higher levels of success in sticking with it long term.
Every person is conditioned with their own perspective on how to approach fitness and health in general. Some people see exercising as work, while others view it as a reward. The latter perspective has been proven more effective because when you workout, you feel good about yourself you feel the benefits of your efforts right away. Rather than waiting until after achieving a goal or until losing weight before patting yourself on the back for turning up. Change your language, instead of saying that you “Have” to do a workout, say that you “Get” to do a workout. There would be plenty of others out there that would love the opportunity to do a workout, so make the most of what your body can do for you and Choose/Get to do your next workout.
If you’re an avid exerciser, your habits may be ingrained. But for those of us who need a little help getting in the habit, these four steps can work wonders in making exercise a part of your daily routine. Eventually, achieving fitness goals will become second nature as they turn into parts of everyday life–and not something we have to force ourselves do anymore!
If you still struggle with getting into a regular routine after trying the above tips, then maybe it’s time to get a Personal Trainer. Someone with experience who can guide you with a program that will keep you motivated and wanting to turn up. Give me a call if you want to talk more about how you can start to feel better about your body and better about working out. 0414 544 944. I look forward to helping you out.