It's easy to start an exercise routine once you've decided it's time for a change, but keeping it up is a challenge for many people. Hitting a roadblock or two is normal, but by planning ahead, you can overcome it. There are bound to be days when you have a bad work out or don't get to exercise at all. When this happens, the most important thing is to accept it, turn any negative thoughts into positive thoughts and plan to get back at it tomorrow.
Read more about positive self-talk, which can be really helpful for getting over these hurdles.
Track Your Activity
Stay on track with your routine by keeping a record of the activity that you do. It can help keep you more accountable for times that you do not make time for activity and times that you could have done more. A record or log will also help you see patterns so you can adjust your routine to work better for you.
- Is there a certain day of the week that you have trouble finding time to work out?
- Are there some activities that are easier to keep going than others?
- Are there certain activities that you enjoy more than others?
Mix up Your Routine
By mixing up your routine with activities you enjoy, you’ll have more fun and you’ll stay active longer. It will also help you work different muscles.
Let's say you are getting tired of walking every day. For a change of pace, you could try a group class once a week instead. Another day, you could do a brisk walk or bike ride with a friend to mix it up even more. By varying your activities and how hard you’re working out, you can also lower your risk of injury.
Find an Exercise Buddy
Having an exercise buddy or a group to work out with can be a real motivator. If you have regular planned activities with a group or even just one other person, it helps hold you accountable and get you moving. Plus it can make working out more fun.
Do What You Enjoy
Choosing activities that you enjoy, fit into your schedule and are within your budget will also help you stick with it. Select a few things that keep you moving (aerobic exercise like walking or swimming) and a few that help you build muscles (like using weight machines or walking with light weights). Be prepared—choose a few activities you can do outside and a few you can do inside when the weather is bad.