We all know that consistent exercise is integral to maintaining a healthy body and mind, but maintaining a routine can seem daunting and what begins with the best intentions often disintegrates under the daily stresses of life. We’ve all been there. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to avoid abandoning your best laid-plans.
Don’t Overdo It
It’s easy to overcommit to a new exercise routine. Everyone wants quick result so we make plans to run five miles every day and spend two hours lifting weights. This is a guaranteed way to burn out. Start small and be patient with yourself. If you absolutely hate your first workout because you overdid it, you have much less of a chance of coming back for your second. Additionally, at least one rest day a week is important to give yourself time to heal.
Set Small Goals
Maybe it’s your ultimate goal to run a half marathon or be able to dead-lift your body weight, and that’s great! However, it’s good to also set smaller, more attainable goals along the way to keep you motivated. The human brain is reward oriented and a fun reward when you can run 3 miles without stopping might be what you need to keep going.
Build a Support Network
It’s ok to lean on family and friends during your exercise journey. Having a running or gym buddy is a great way to stay accountable or make working out fun. If no one else in your life is at your level or fits into your schedule, get a professional support network. There are trained professionals in your area to help you stay committed and have your best workout.
Stick With it For a Month
Did you know that it takes 28 days to form a habit, good or bad? That means that if you can get yourself to exercise consistently for four weeks, there’s a good chance you formed a habit and it will seem natural to incorporate it into your daily routine.
By remembering to start with manageable workouts, setting small goals, accepting help from others, and sticking with it for a month to build a habit you will be able to get your new exercise routine off to a great start. This helps ensure that your new exercise routine will be long lasting and productive.