Recently, I discussed how exercise changed my life. But exercise wasn’t always part of my life. I used to be one of those people who would “start on Monday”. I’d get started on a routine for a couple of weeks and be excited by it… but then fall back to my couch and my old sedentary ways.
I can’t imagine that ever happening in my life again. There are weeks where I take more rest days than others but it has been years since I’ve had an entire week without exercising. It’s a part of my life, my routine and what keeps me sane. So how do you achieve this? What took me from a casual exerciser to a consistent exerciser?
1. Set specific goals
Goal setting is the key to exercise success. Goals give you something to focus on and a purpose to your exercise routine. But not any goal will work. Going to the gym with the idea of “getting fit” or “being healthy” is too broad and it doesn’t motivate you on a daily basis to get to the gym.
Keep goals specific and focused on something functional rather than appearance or weight. They can be anything from I want to make it through the entire Jillian Michael’s workout DVD without taking a break, I want to squat 100lbs or I want to complete 10 push-ups from my toes. Once you’ve achieved your goal, set the next one.
2. Find something you love
If you don’t love your exercise routine, you’ll never keep it up. So find what you love. Don’t worry about what your friend is doing or joining the “cool” thing. If exercise makes you happy and you enjoy doing it, you are much more likely to make it into a consistent routine.
3. Find a great facility
A gym that intimidates you is not a gym you are going to attend regularly. Find the right place for you that you feel comfortable attending.
I also look for a place that includes the “extras”. Sometimes I like running on a treadmill or lifting weights but often I like group exercise classes to keep me motivated. Places like GoodLife Fitness includes these classes in the membership which means you can get a variety of workouts from one single membership.
4. Start small and work up
If you aren’t currently exercising regularly, setting your goal or intention to workout 6 days a week isn’t realistic. Start small with 1 or 2 days a week. After a while you can add in another day or a different exercise on the third day and work up gradually.
Everyone is busy and it’s easy to use being busy as an excuse to not workout. But you can find time if you schedule. Look at your weekly planner and decide which days you can workout based on your other commitments. Schedule your workout in and don’t plan anything else during that time. Make the commitment to yourself and honour your schedule.
What ways have you found to keep your exercise routine consistent?
This post is being written as part of the GoodLife Fitness Blogger Ambassador Program.