Here I have an amazing guest post from a fitness blogger who loves a workout I am sure you will find useful.
If you find it hard to stick to your exercise routine over the past few months, you’re likely not alone. Building the fitness habit is no easy feat, and most people who take up exercise for the first time usually give up by the second week.
However, you can make exercise a part of your lifestyle once you have the right approach and mindset. That’s where today’s post comes in handy.
Here are my best tips for making exercise a more consistent part of your routine, even if you’re really busy.
Sticking to your workout plan may boil down to how you get started. Commit the classic mistake of doing too much too, and you’ll be setting yourself up for a major setback. That’s why actually many give up on exercise only a few weeks in.
For instance, if you’re aiming to lose 20 pounds while putting 10 pounds of muscles while also building some endurance, and running your first marathon as a complete couch potato—all in three months, then you’re more likely to burn yourself down.
Here’s the truth. The fastest way to demotivate yourself is to pursue unrealistic standards—goals you won’t be able to attain regardless of how driven you are.
Instead, make sure your goals are within your reach. Here are a few examples:
- Losing one to two pounds per week
- Gaining muscle and losing weight as long as you’re training heavy, getting plenty of protein, and keeping a slight calorie deficit.
- Increasing weekly mileage by 10 per cent from one week to the next.
- Training three to four times per week.
Another helpful measure is exercising with a partner. You’re less likely to skip a workout when you have it planned with someone else. It also turns exercise into a fun social activity instead of being a chore.
Think about whom you can invite to join you for your workout. Look for a partner who is into the same workouts as you, and shares your fitness vision as well as your commitment to getting fit.
Before you commit, discuss with your partner your specific fitness goals and fitness plan, and let them know when you will train. Agree on everything beforehand.
Keep a Workout Journal
A great motivator for many is seeing tangible progress from one week to the next. But it can take months before you start noticing real fitness gains and changes in body composition. It’s also not easy to catch progress in the act.
This is why you should start keeping a workout journal. In it, you monitor your exercise routine, and everything else related to it. By regularly doing so, you’ll be able to catch progress as it happens. It also ensures that you properly plan your next sessions in line with your previous ones.
Whether you’re monitoring your progress using the class’s good old-fashioned pen and paper, or with an app, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment and drive from seeing your stats improve over time.
Keep a Schedule
Before the start of each week, have a well-defined game plan for your workout routine. By designing a game plan, you can head to the gym on a mission. It’s also a great way to keep track of your goals and progress.
Assess your daily calendar and decide when, where, and how much time you have to work out on specific days. Next, commit your sessions to your calendar and block off that time.
When it’s most realistic for you to exercise regularly? Is it the morning? Afternoon? The lunch break hour? You choose.
As a rule, schedule three non-negotiable workouts a week. More is better, as long as you’re training within your fitness level and taking enough recovery.
Make a Self-Contract
If you want to achieve better consistency with your workout plan, I propose you draft a self-contract so you’ll stay focused on your fitness vision.
But what do I mean by a self-contract?
Don’t worry. It’s nothing legalese or complicated. A self-contract refers to any kind of commitment—or pledge-where you write down your ultimate vision as well as how to achieve it. Nothing more. Nothing less.
So how to create one?
Simple. Make to include the following in your contract:
Your fitness vision. This could be a series of short-term and long-term goals. Examples include exercising three times a week, losing 2 pounds a month, or running a 5K.
Your plan. Write down the steps you need to take to achieve your fitness goals. Leave nothing for chance. You have to know what you need to do in order to get it done.
Rewards and punishments. Describe any rewards for honouring the contract as well as any penalties for breaking it. It’s the classic carrot and stick trick, but with a little formality added to it. That’s what gives it an air of importance.
A deadline. This should consist of the date (or dates) by which you should achieve a certain goal. Change this as your personal goals change. Don’t feel like you have to tie yourself down with long-term commitments.
Your signature and date of signature. This is self-explanatory.
There you have it. The above guidelines cover some of the best measures you can take right now to make exercise more consistent in your life. Now it’s just a matter of applying those measures as soon as possible.
The ball is in your court. You decide where to go next. The rest is just details, as the saying goes.
In the meantime thank you for dropping by.
Keep exercising strong.
About the author:
David Dack is an established fitness blogger and running expert. When he’s not training for his next marathon, he’s doing research and trying to help as many people as possible to share his fitness philosophy. Check his blog Runners Blueprint for more info.
To read all my posts with tips and experiences of various diets, exercises and lots more check out my comprehensive Weight Loss section.