Your idea of fun might not be exercise. If it is call me and we’ll do lunch. But most likely it’s not. It’s probably watching reality TV or hanging with your friends and family or even staying late at work. (Hey, some people will do anything to avoid exercising.)
So here some tips you can use to hopefully keep yourself exercising:
1. Always exercise on Monday. This sets the psychological pattern for the week.
2. If possible (well, anything is possible), exercise first thing in the morning. As the day progresses, you’ll find more excuses to skip exercising. Get it done first thing and you’ll get the benefit of feeling energized all day.
3. If you can’t wake up early and want to exercise after work that’s totally fine. But no sitting down when you get home! If you sit down you’re going to find reasons to skip your workout.
4. Strike two! Never skip exercising for two days in a row. You can skip a day, but the next day, you must exercise, no matter how inconvenient. The problem is most people act the way they feel. Instead try acting and doing first. The good feelings will follow.
5. Set designated times and days for yourself. You are the most important person in your world. Not your clients, not your boss, not your anything. Without you – your world doesn’t exist. Would you miss a meeting with someone that’s really important to you? So don’t skip your appointments with yourself.
6. Focus on all of the amazing benefits of exercise. Research shows that people who exercise are healthier, think more clearly, sleep better, AND have more energy. Enough said.
7. I love music. I’m constantly buying more of it. But I only allow myself to listen to my iPod while I’m exercising. You’ll find yourself wanting to workout just to listen to your music.
8. If you must listen to your iPod during the day don’t listen to your favorite workout songs. You know – the songs that make you want to move. Save them for the gym.
9. Go through the motions if you’re really tired. Remember, exercise boosts energy levels. If you feel like there’s no way you’ll get through the workout tell yourself you can quit after 20 minutes. Even if you’re tired for the first 10 minutes of your workout, you’ll be glad you started. Once you get yourself to start – you won’t want to quit.
Tip: After each workout you should not be totally exhausted. Instead you should finish when you still feel you have some energy to keep going.
10. It might not be the actual exercise you hate. Many of my female clients tell me they dislike weight-training. But in actuality, they dislike the guys who hang out in the weight-training area. Are you grossed out about the showers in your gym? Do you try to run in the mornings, but hate the cold? Look at the factors that might be holding you back from exercising. “Excuse me, do you know where the weight room is?”
11. Don’t shower! Ew, I know. But, if you don’t have time both to exercise and take a shower, find a way to exercise that doesn’t require you to shower afterward like yoga, walking or even weight training.
12. Throw money at the cause! Could you upgrade to a nicer or more convenient gym? Buy yourself a new iPod? Work with someone? Get a pedometer to keep track of your walking distances? Exercise is a high life priority (or at least should be because it pays off big in your quality of life), so this a worthwhile place to spend your money.
13. Think of exercise as part of your essential preparation for times you want to especially be on point — whether in performance (to be sharp for a big presentation) or appearance (to look good for a wedding — read about how Marisa lost 18 pounds for her wedding) or mood (to deal with a stressful situation).
14. Good is NOT the enemy of great. Don’t decide to exercise only if you can run five miles or if you can bike for an hour. I have a friend who won’t exercise unless she’s training for a marathon, so she never exercises. Even going for a ten-minute walk is worthwhile. Do what you can. Remember: Something is always better than nothing!
15. Don’t kid yourself (although it’s very hard not to). Belonging to a gym doesn’t mean you go to the gym. Having been in shape in high school or college doesn’t mean you’re in shape now. Saying that you don’t have time to exercise doesn’t make it true. In fact, there are ways to be more productive in other areas of your life to make time for exercising. You will never find time to exercise. You have to make time!
16. Focus on how exercising makes you feel. Have you ever felt worse after excising than you did before exercising? Or to put it another way, I always feel amazing after I exercise… and so will you!