Make Your Exercise Program Stick
Starting an exercise program can’t be all that difficult… right? Most of us have tried it at one time or another so we all know the real issue is not starting one, but sticking with it. After a while our good intentions, not to mention our energy and enthusiasm, seem to slowly disappear and suddenly we are making excuses as to why we are unable to get out and burn a few calories.
The benefits of exercise are hard to ignore. It makes us feel good and look great! With improved sleep, more energy and weight management as our rewards, how can we overcome the inevitable ‘blahs’ that seem to set in? Here are a few ideas:
Don’t do the same activities every day. By doing a variety of exercises, we are confusing our muscles, helping them to respond quickly. Nothing is more of an incentive than when you start noticing results!
2. Workout with a Friend
It’s easier to stick with an exercise program when you are working out with a friend. Many people like the social aspects as well as the encouragement. It also means you are less likely to cancel a workout if a friend is counting on you. By the same token, you need to be prepared to go on your own on the days your workout buddy has to cancel.
3. Make It a Priority
Exercise must be considered a priority. It’s easy to wave off a workout if you don’t take it seriously. Time to make yourself ‘Priority Number One’! If everyone else comes first on your list, which is often the case, your exercise program is likely to slide. Make exercise a part of your core identity so others will know that this is something important you do for yourself. Make a plan and put your name on it, just like you would for all those other important people on your list!
4. Schedule Exercise First Thing in the Morning
If you are able, get exercise ‘out of the way’ first thing in the morning, then if something unexpected pops up, you’ve already had your workout. Besides, doesn’t it just feel good to start your day off right?
5. Keep a Journal
Document how much you are exercising each day. If you are walking or running, jot down how many miles and how long it took. Some people like to add their combined distances up and calculate their progress. Make yourself a chart or some other visual representation of all the work you have put in, and what you hope to achieve. Note your progress, and brainstorm through the challenges.
6. Reward Yourself
Set goals and once they are achieved, reward yourself. Schedule a much needed massage or spa treatment. Shop for something you wouldn’t normally buy for yourself.