If you want to lose body fat, be healthier, or get fitter, you need to be active regularly. In order to achieve those goals, you need to find ways to get more exercise and make exercise a habit. Exercise needs to be part of your weekly routine.
The following are some concrete tips to help you make exercise a habit:
- Commit for 30 Days: In order to make exercise part of your life, you should start by committing to exercising for at least a month. Whether you train 2 days a week or 5 days a week, doing it for a month will help you to stick with exercise and make it a habit.
- Spell Out Your Goal: Write down your goal using the S.M.A.R.T. acronym (Specific – Measurable – Achievable – Relevant – Time-limited). Connect your goal to something significant so it takes root deep within you. Proceed to write down the reasons why you want that goal, your pain points, and the foreseen benefits for you and others when you achieve the goal. For instance, instead of planning to lose weight or be more active, plan to exercise 3 days a week for 45 minutes for the next 90 days because it’s going to help you normalize your blood pressure and give you more energy to play with your kids.
- Create a Realistic Action Plan: Make your exercise a priority, schedule it on your calendar, and delineate how you’ll make it a part of your week. In order to make exercise more automatic, it has to be doable and not very complicated. Planning to train 5 days a week for an hour may not be realistic or sustainable if you are a beginner. Instead, plan to partake in weight training 2 days a week & cardiovascular activities 2 days a week for 30 minutes after work.
- Plan for Obstacles: Be proactive and think about all the possible stumbling blocks that you may encounter and how can you address them. This helps you be prepared and ready to move forward. For instance, if you have occasional events after work, set up your calendar where your schedule is less hectic. Additionally, plan for changes in the weather or other time constraints.
- Make Exercise Part of Your Identity: In order to incorporate exercise into your routine, you have to frame your whole persona with exercise in mind and believe that exercise is part of your weekly routine – no matter what. See yourself as a person who regularly exercises, not a couch potato.
- Attach Exercise to a Current Behavior: Connect exercise to something you already do and give yourself visible cues. Let’s say you want to start working out after work. Then, you should keep a gym bag on a passenger seat so you are reminded, once you get in your car heading home, that you should stop at the gym or park first.
- Get Accountable: People are more likely to follow through with a plan when they are observed by others. Get a coach or an accountability buddy to get fully committed to implementing changes.
- Make Exercise Satisfying: Plan different ways to make exercise enjoyable and/or connect it to something pleasurable. You can, also, reward yourself to reinforce your effort and consistency.
Exercise should be part of your life so you can be healthier, fitter, and leaner. Follow the tips described above so you can incorporate exercise into your life and experience long-lasting change. Check out 28 Days to a New Life to incorporate a holistic approach and make changes in all areas of your life.
To a Fitter Healthier You,
The Fitness Wellness Mentor