Making Exercise a Regular Habit
Have you been struggling to make exercise a regular habit? Staying active is an important component of a healthy lifestyle, and with a few tweaks it is possible to make a real change.
If you’d like to get out of your exercise rut, it’s important to make concrete, achievable fitness goals. Pick up an inexpensive day planner and pencil in workout time. Write down your goals for the week and then keep track of your activity each night.
Do you feel as though you’ve spent more time on the couch than the pavement? If so, there’s no need to sign up for a marathon next month. Instead speak with your doctor and look online for a customized plan to achieve your goals. Then sign up for a shorter race, such as a 5k. When you take small, healthy steps towards your goals, you minimize the chance of injuries, burnout, and keep your training fun. For excellent free running and walking plans, I recommend Coach Jenny Hadfield’s website, https://www.jennyhadfield.com/training-plans/.
Have your exercise workouts become unbearable? You may need a change of scenery. Try a long walk outside or try Zumba or Pilates. Enroll in a paddle boarding class or take your kids to the park and chase them around the playground or soccer field. People who successfully incorporate exercise into their daily lives stay active doing a wide variety of things they enjoy.
Want to know the biggest secret to success? Grab a partner. Studies have shown that working with a buddy significantly increases your chances of achieving your fitness goals. Enlist a friend, join a running club or start your own Facebook group and invite everyone who would be interested. Your proud, sweaty selfies and daily check-ins will help to keep everyone in the group motivated and on the wagon.
Today is the perfect day to set and accomplish your exercise and fitness goals. Go out for a walk, turn on a YouTube yoga class or get ready for a day of active fun with your children or friends.
American Heart Association. Getting Started- Tips for Long-term Exercise Success. (September 2014). Retrieved August 30, 2016, from http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/HealthyLiving/PhysicalActivity/GettingActive/Getting-Started—Tips-for-Long-term-Exercise-Success_UCM_307979_Article.jsp#.V8WhTmVNnos
Coach Jenny’s Training Plans. Retrieved August 30, 2016, from https://www.jennyhadfield.com
Irwin, B. C., Scorniaenchi, J., Kerr, N. L., Eisenmann, J. C., & Feltz, D. L. (2012). Aerobic Exercise Is Promoted when Individual Performance Affects the Group: A Test of the Kohler Motivation Gain Effect. Annals of Behavioral Medicine Ann. Behav. Med., 44(2), 151-159. doi:10.1007/s12160-012-9367-4