With a fresh year right around the corner, you’re probably busy planning your New Year’s resolutions. Exercise is one of the most common resolutions made world-wide, yet one very few can stick with past the first few weeks of the year. How can you make a success of exercise this year? We have the tips you need to keep going.
Don’t overdo it
Unless you spent the last year training for it, you’re not running a marathon at the end of January. It might be frustrating if you used to be fit, or simply feel enthusiastic, but it’s best to start small. That doesn’t mean to never step outside your comfort zone, but the less aches, pains, and injuries set you back, the better the chance you stick with your exercises. Not sure how to start? Try this easy guide to starting exercise.
Choose variety, not boredom
Unless there’s an exercise you really like, shake it up a bit. Boredom kills our incentive to do things, so try a few different things and keep your exercise sessions interesting.
Be kind to yourself
If you’re your own drill sergeant, chances are you won’t get far with your new program. You wouldn’t motivate a friend to keep going by destroying their confidence, driving them past their limits, and telling them they’re worthless if they don’t live up to impossible standards. Why do you think it will work for you? Instead, work with yourself kindly and stop negative self-talk.
Work on a routine
There’s a large focus on ‘motivation’ as a reason to work out. However, motivation is fleeting and can easily be lost. You may feel it now, but will you still feel that way when it’s mid-winter and freezing? Motivation can be great to help you start a new habit, but what you need to keep it going is dedication. The easiest way to keep momentum is to establish a routine. Schedule your exercise in your diary like any other important activity. Make sure you do something, even if it’s a short session. Teaching yourself a routine trigger can help here. Just like brushing our teeth and putting on PJs makes us feel sleepy, tie your exercise to another daily activity you have no problem doing, and it will soon feel like a more natural part of your day.
Don’t get discouraged – there’s always help
While you may want to introduce exercise to your life for the fitness or health aspects, many of us are also looking to lose weight. It’s important to be realistic about what you can achieve through exercise, however. A lot more goes into weight loss than just exercise, although it’s a great way to stay fit and healthy while you work on your waistline.
Since weight loss can be complicated, it’s possible to exercise but still not lose weight. A multitude of factors cause this, but they can always be resolved. You may need a tweak to your diet, more time invested in recovery, or even better sleep. Don’t get discouraged! Even if the scale stays the same, exercising has so many positive benefits for the body and mind you are sure to love what happens as you get more into it
Exercise isn’t the easiest New Year’s resolution to make, but it’s one of the most rewarding you can ever work on. With these simple tips under your belt, you’re sure to make this the year you learn to love exercise and see the difference it makes on your health and well being.