Need Help Sticking with Your Exercise Routine? Here Are 5 Tips
Let’s be honest, putting together an exercise routine takes some work. First you need to do research, maybe meet with a trainer, and then possibly purchase some new equipment. But now all that “hard work” is done you are all set, right?
Wrong. Now comes the hard part — actually sticking with your routine!
The reality is that, while we may have the best intentions when drawing up a fitness plan, often we lose steam, confidence, and motivation to keep it going.
What once seemed so doable just a little while ago — going to the gym regularly, running a mile or two a day, etc. — now seems nearly impossible. And while it’s easy to blame our loss of focus on the busyness of life, the reality is that we’ve just lost our motivation for whatever reason.
Some experts say that it can take anywhere from 18 to 254 days for a person to form a new habit, and an average of 66 days for a new behavior to become automatic.
Yep. That’s the hard truth, and so we need to resort to a few tricks to keep things going until our exercise routines become second nature — and even something that we look forward to!
Here are 5 tips we’d like to offer:
1. Write it down
Albert Einstein once said, “Paper is to write things down that we need to remember. Our brains are used to think.”
Here’s the thing, when we just “fit our workout” into each day’s events, we’ll end up ditching the gym more often than not. There is just too much out there competing for our time and attention to leave our workouts to chance.
Make your workout and/or gym-time part of your written schedule. Pick your days, your times, write them down, and then stick to it. Remember, if you don’t control your schedule, it will control you.
2. Just get there.
Why does it seem that, even though we have the best of intentions to make our workouts, we end up coming up with a million “reasons” to skip them?
It’s called the 5 second rule.
The 5 Second Rule is simple. If you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must physically move within 5 seconds or your brain will kill it.
In other words, you need to act quickly or you’ll rationalize your way out of acting at all.
So when your calendar alerts you that it’s time to work out, don’t wait.
Go to the closet.
Put on your sneakers and get moving.
Because, at the end of the day, indecision kills.
3. Sometimes “better” is good enough.
Often people start their fitness plan with an all-or-nothing mindset. In other words, if they can’t get a full 60-minute session in at the gym, better to just ditch the whole thing rather than going half way.
The truth is that, sometimes, just doing “better” is good enough. Sure, burning off 700 calories in an hour is amazing, but if all you can do is 350 calories, that’s not too bad either.
Some days are a complete win.
Some are only half a win.
But that’s ok, because a win is a win — and way better than a loss.
4. Break your workout into small chunks.
Walking into a workout contemplating what’s ahead can be intimidating. Thoughts may start swirling in your head…
Can I really do this?
Do I have enough energy to make it?
How many pushups?!
Rather than thinking about your workout as a singular Herculean task, break it up into small goals. This division will reduce your workout into more mentally manageable chunks so that you can stay present, focused, and most importantly… motivated.
5. Be “OK” with not always being “OK.”
Even the most motivated of us will have times when we just really don’t want to do our workout sessions.
When this happens, avoid the self-condemnation and/or reading too much into your lack of motivation. These ups and downs are completely normal, and knowing that can help you accept those moments and move past them — rather than seeing them as signs of weakness.
Sticking to a regimented fitness plan takes real commitment. Over time, these workout sessions will become part of your normal routine and possibly even something you yearn for. Until that happens, use these little hacks to keep the motivation up and pounds away.
And don’t forget – we’re ready at Bee Healthy Clinics to help you along on your weight loss journey for better health. Reach out to your nearest location any time.