So, you’ve made the decision to start exercising. Thats great! Perhaps this isn’t your first go at it, but this time you really mean it! Right??
Sticking to any sort of new regimen can be challenging at first, but the more you do it the more routine it becomes. Here are a few tips I would like to share that may help you stick to this life long journey!
Be Specific: Saying your going to start working out is great! However choosing specific activities is better. Instead, say you WILL go for a brisk walk after work everyday. Or, you WILL follow a specific exercise program at least 3 times a week.
Be Realistic: If your a complete couch potato and suddenly decide your going to run 5k, you may wind up frustrated and on the verge of passing out. This is something you should plan on working on for the rest of your life, take baby steps. You’ll see little improvements in no time, and before you know it you’ll be working on your 10k.
Don’t Obsess Over Weight: Sure, numbers do matter! Blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and heart rate are all very important numbers; pounds/kilograms are not. Your body naturally fluctuates a few pounds everyday. Also, as you loose fat and gain muscle you may not see a significant change on the scale. Eat well, exercise, stay active, and it will show.
Educate: Take time to learn about your body and how it works. The more you learn about this amazing system, understanding how to take care of it becomes easier. Pick up a text book on basic anatomy and physiology or nutrition; watch food documentaries; talk to credible trainers at your gym; and get some of your questions answered by your health care provider.
Find Things You Enjoy: If spending an hour in the weight room isn’ t really your thing, that is no reason to give up on exercise. Maybe you’d enjoy kick boxing? Or how about yoga, spin classes, hiking, rock climbing, or jogging? Only one way to find out!
Do Not Compare: Focus on yourself and don’t let anyone intimidate you. It doesn’t matter how much weight Jenny can squat, or how heavy Jack can bench, that won’t help you reach your goals. Unless you view these people as motivation, forget em…this is about YOU!
Be Patient: It’s cliche but true; good things take time! As I mentioned earlier, this is a lifelong commitment so there is no need to give up because your not seeing what you want right away.
Positivity: It may sound silly, but try removing the words “can’t” and “won’t”, or any other negative word or phrase that holds you back from accomplishing your goals. More importantly, surround yourself with positive people who support you and understand the importance of being active. If you have a a bunch of lazy friends, or a family that eats poorly, invite them to the healthy side! If they resist, well they’ll soon be kicking themselves once they see how great you look and feel.
Get Involved: Is there a sport you used to play as a kid? Or an activity you always wanted to try? Consider joining a team or group of some sort. Running groups, boot camps, or a team sport could be what you need to stay committed, with the added benefit of meeting others with similar goals.
Find Motivation: We all have days when even the thought of exercise makes us tired. Having something to motivate us on these days makes a difference. Personally, I sit and think about how great I feel after a good workout and how blahhh I’ll feel if skip it. Sometimes I even look up exercises online, because seeing people working out makes me want to get ‘err done too! Find something that works for you.
If even one of these tips helps you out, I’m glad! Try your best and don’t give up!