Do you have an on-off relationship with fitness? I get it; just as you’re getting into a regular exercise routine, things get busy and your workouts are the first thing to go. Or maybe the thought of diving into a fitness/health routine again just seems overwhelming and daunting…not fun at all, am I right?
The truth is, many of us struggle to exercise consistently. According to the CDC, less than 22% of adults do the minimum amount of physical activity that’s recommended for health. That leaves the other 78% at risk of inactivity-related diseases, let’s not let that be you! In all my years of training, I have found that the biggest issue is that exercise isn’t fun…sooo I wanted to share 3 ways to fall in love with fitness again…
“In essence, if we want to direct our lives, we must take control of our consistent actions.
It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives, but what we do consistently.”
~ Tony Robbins ~
#1 – Create a Reward System
Creating a reward system can be a great way to incentivize healthy behavior. What can you give yourself after a workout to award your positive actions? This should be something that’s aligned with your health goals rather than something that’ll sabotage them. You might feel like you’ve ‘earned’ a giant cupcake for your exercise efforts but obviously, that defeats the purpose!
Instead, think about ways that you can treat yourself in a healthy way. Maybe it’s enjoying a relax in the sauna after your workout. Or sitting outside in the sunshine with a nutritious green smoothie. You could even incentivize yourself with new workout clothes if you exercise a set number of times this month. Pick something that you’ll appreciate and look forward to, then get out there and make it happen! What I did was had 2 mason jars (all decorated pretty because that just makes me happy) and every time I worked out, I put a marble in the other jar. I also moved a marble over if I stayed within my calorie range. Once all my marbles were over, I’d get a massage!
** tip: Start small here! If you are really struggling to make this a priority and make it stick, you’ll want to have a reward more often until it becomes a habit.
#2 – Make it Fun
Has exercise become a chore for you? Something you do because you ‘should’ rather than because you want to? So many people view working out as a punishment; it’s something they suffer through to get the results they want. But exercise CAN be fun too!
If you associate fitness with trudging along on a treadmill or endless reps on a smith machine, then it’s time to choose a new perspective. Exercise can be anything that you want it to be – you just need to decide what that is. Finding something that you really enjoy is the key to making it a habit. If you can find an exercise that you look forward to instead of dread, then you’re less likely to bail out at the last minute. Here are a few ways to make exercising more enjoyable…
- Do it with friends – make exercise a social event by working out with friends or joining a group exercise class. Plus, I don’t have to tell you that accountability is VITAL to success!
- Pick a childhood activity – think back to your favorite pastimes as a child and see if there’s anything similar in your area for adults – think trampolining, aerial yoga, or softball.
- Choose relaxation over punishment – try yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi or meditation instead of intense workouts.
#3 – Remove the Pressure
Putting too much pressure on yourself can steal the joy from every area of your life. Whether it’s fitness, work, or being the ‘perfect’ mom, we all hold ourselves to exceptionally high standards that just aren’t realistic (it’s setting us up for failure in every way). But simply taking the pressure off ourselves can work wonders!
Instead of focusing on your results, just concentrate on doing your best! Get out of your own head about it – life’s too short. Stop comparing yourself to others, or to your past self for that matter! Just focus on giving it your all, with the body that you have right now. You’ll be amazed at how much more enjoyable exercise can be with this mindset.
If you’d like help to banish negative thought patterns and work on your health from a positive place, then my online program can help. Break Free is a 7-day challenge designed to help you slash the negative thoughts, doubts, and fears that keep you stagnant in life. Learn more here.