Want to know the secret to sticking with an exercise routine? People who are successful at exercising choose activities that interest them, set realistic goals for themselves, and develop a fitness plan to help them achieve those goals. You don’t have to be an athlete to try these approaches – these exercise tips can work for just about everyone. Read on to find out how you can get more motivated to get on a fitness routine that can lead to a healthier, happier, and more fit you this spring.
Find activities that match your interests.Want to walk regularly, become a stronger swimmer, start running, or work on your dance moves? There are many types of fitness goals and challenges, and many are free and some have inexpensive apps for tracking your training. The secret is to find an activity you like so you will stick with it! Here are some ideas:
If you start with a goal that’s too challenging, you might get discouraged and give up. So, if you’ve never run before, don’t sign up to run a marathon! Try a fitness plan to build up to running a 5K instead. Make sure you start with small goals or challenges. Small successes will give you a sense of accomplishment and motivate you to stick with your plan.
While the goal should be a challenge, the logistics shouldn’t be. Make sure you are set up for success by answering these questions:
If you answered yes to most of these questions, you have a greater chance of sticking with the fitness plan.
Once you’ve chosen your activity and goal, you need to make the time to get it done. If you are going to walk 30 minutes a day or you are following a fitness plan that requires you to run 3 times a week, put each session on your calendar so you have set aside the time you will need. Record your progress in a journal, log or workout planner to help you stay on track. There are a number of fun apps you can use to gauge your progress.
Having a companion join you in the activity may help you stick with it and hold you accountable. Ask family members, coworkers, Facebook community, church group, or neighbors to participate.
Think of ways to reward yourself for accomplishing specific milestones. These rewards may be the extra push you need on days when you are struggling. Stay away from rewarding yourself with food. Some positive reward ideas include a new item of clothing, makeup, new workout music, a home spa day, the latest issue of a fitness magazine, a new blender for smoothies, headphones, and a pedometer or other fitness gadget.
Even if you are not active now, you can gradually build up to more activity than you may have thought possible. Start slow, and track your progress. Recognize that each goal you accomplish, however small it may seem, is still a success, and those little successes add up!
Always check with your doctor before starting any exercise program. You can get advice from your Rite Aid Pharmacist about whether your exercise routine will affect your medicine regimen. Hopefully these exercise tips will help find a fitness plan that you will enjoy and stick with!
“Stay Active and Be Fit.” President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. https://www.presidentschallenge.org/tools-resources/docs/adultgetfit.pdf
“Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.” President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition. http://www.fitness.gov/be-active/physical-activity-guidelines-for-americans/
“Staying Focused on Reality, Not Hype.” American College of Sports Medicine. http://certification.acsm.org/blog/2012/september/staying-focused-on-reality-not-hype
“New Year, New Fitness Habits.” American College of Sports Medicine. http://certification.acsm.org/blog/2012/december/new-year-new-fitness-habits
“ACSM Fit Society Page.” American College of Sports Medicine. October 2013. http://www.acsm.org/docs/fit-society-page/acsmfsp15-3.pdf?sfvrsn=0
“Adding Physical Activity to Your Life.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Last updated: December 1, 2011. http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/getactive/index.html
“Overcoming Barriers to Physical Activity.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Last updated: February 16, 2011. http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/getactive/barriers.html
These articles are not a substitute for medical advice, and are not intended to treat or cure any disease. Advances in medicine may cause this information to become outdated, invalid, or subject to debate. Professional opinions and interpretations of scientific literature may vary. Consult your healthcare professional before making changes to your diet, exercise, or medication regime.