A lot of people feel daunted when they try to adopt a more active lifestyle. You might feel nervous about going to the gym, or feel like some moves are too advanced for your fitness level. A certain level of apprehension is normal, but don't let those feelings keep you from making the choice to stay motivated.
Here are five ways you can stay motivated and make your new workout routine a habit that will bring more wellness to your life.
1. Bring a friend.
There are days when you won't feel like getting out of bed to exercise. If you have a friend who is counting on you, however, you have additional motivation to go and support them, just as they have the motivation to support you. If you're both beginners, you can laugh and commiserate about soreness and rookie mistakes. Social support makes any change more bearable.
2. Set a short term goal.
Short term goals help you to stick with your routine. If you have a goal for the week, for example, to work out every day that week, you can make a solid plan and the goal will seem achievable. Conversely, a goal like "Be more active this month" won't be specific or short term enough to really make a change in your overall behavior.
Other short term goals might be lifting a certain amount of weight, losing a few pounds by a certain date, or running a mile without stopping. Give yourself these milestones along the way to help yourself stay motivated.
3. Go at the same time each day.
If you plan to workout each morning before work, stay consistent. If you don't want to wake up one morning, you might tell yourself you'll just workout later that day. But life gets busy — there's a reason you chose early morning. Choose a time that won't get bumped for other priorities, and stick with it.
4. Make your workout a high priority.
In addition, staying active needs to move higher up on your list of priorities during the day. If you have a busy day planned, don't let the first thing you cut out be your planned workout. Treat a daily workout as a non-negotiable item in your schedule.
5. Recover properly at home.
Finally, make sure you recover! Too many people feel that they need to scale back their effort at the gym, but what they really need is more focus on recovery. Stretching after a workout, drinking plenty of water, eating nutritious food, and getting enough sleep all help prevent injury and reduce soreness. You'll be less likely to skip exercise if you are taking care of your body in between workouts so you can be ready for the next one.
For more information about fitness programs, contact a local gym or exercise class.