Proven exercise tips
In the 10 years I’ve been helping people develop healthy behaviors around food and exercise, I’ve found that most people truly want to exercise more to improve their health and fitness; however, as with diet, knowing what to do and actually doing it are two very different things.
I’ve learned that addressing the psychology behind why people don’t exercise as often as they know they should usually does the trick. Here are some tips that have helped my clients make their workouts actually happen:
1. Start small.
Too many people go from doing nothing to exercising for hours per day… only to burn out weeks later. If your workout feels daunting, it’s easier to skip out on it, so make the exercise doable. I’ve had many clients who would only exercise if they could run a full five miles or bike for an hour. One client scorned exercise unless she was training for a marathon, so she never exercised. But the 10-minute workout we actually do is always better than the “perfect” workout we never do; something is always better than nothing.
2. Follow the 10-minute rule.
The hardest part about exercising is starting, and the easiest way to get started is to commit to less up front. This approach makes taking that first step less daunting. If you’re 10 minutes in and want to stop, you can, but the momentum and good feelings usually take over, and you end up following through.
(I wrote this article for Greatist. It was a fun article to write.)