Ever feel like getting in shape is an uphill battle? Do you feel like a salmon swimming up stream just to get a few workouts in? Need some more adhesive for sticking to a diet?
It’s no secret that getting in better shape is tough. There are no shortages of excuses! It can range from lack of time to old age or even alien conspiracy theories. Didn’t you know aliens are making it harder to stay in shape so we can be abducted easier?
It’s bad enough that the weight is heavy or the miles are long, but the environment you surround yourself with every day can also make getting in shape much harder in a million different ways. On the flip side, your environment can make staying in shape far easier. It’s all in how you set things up.
Here are some simple ways to change things around your home so it can be easier to change things around for your fitness.
Tip #1 – Keeping Exercise Resources at The Ready
I always cringe when I learn about home fitness equipment that can be folded and stored away. Exercise equipment that’s stored away usually ends up staying stored away.
We humans are lazy by nature to the point where even if we fold up a treadmill or stash some weights under a chair, we are much less likely to use them. If the treadmill was down and the weights were out in the open then your chances of using them on a regular basis increase dramatically. Even though it might take just a couple of seconds to get things ready those few seconds can be a massive obstacle between you and the use of the equipment.
The same can be said for clothing as well. If your running shoes are buried deep in your closet, chances are you’re not going to use them any time soon. To ensure you get the most mileage out of your fitness equipment, make sure it’s ready to go as much as possible. Keep it in an open area, leave the weights set up and make it as easy as possible to get in a workout.
Tip #2 – Food Availability
When it comes to eating, the immediate availability of certain foods can either help you or hurt you.
I like to keep my place stocked with green light foods. These are foods that are healthy to eat in abundance. Fruits and veggies fill my fridge as well as lots of Greek yogurt, cottage cheese and meats. I also keep a fruit basket out in the open for even more convenient grab and go healthy eating.
Yellow light foods are foods I eat in moderation and have no trouble doing so. These foods are in the home but out of sight. I’m a big fan of chocolate but I don’t worry about going crazy on it. So I keep it in my freezer or in a cupboard. If it’s not always staring me in the face, I don’t think about it too much and I have no trouble eating it in moderation.
Red light foods are foods I should eat in moderation but have trouble doing so. I keep these foods out of the house so I actually have to jump a few hurdles to get at it. My big thing is ice cream. I don’t try to never eat it (heavens forbid) but I would eat massive amounts of it if I had a few half gallons in the fridge. So when I want it, I have to get in my car, drive to the local ice cream shop and pay extra money for a cone. This keeps my ice cream feeling like a special treat and I don’t eat it in dangerous portions.
These food rules also apply for the office as well. Be aware of the proximity of the foods in your work environment. Quite literally, the closer food is to you the more likely you will eat it. So adjust the difficulty of consumption based on the state you want your diet to be in.
Tip #3 – Keep Things Tidy
Is your home gym in a dark damp and cramped corner of the basement but your TV is front and center in your palace of a living room? Guess which area you’re going to spend more time in. Hint; it’s also probably the area that’s closest to the kitchen.
While building a home gym in the family room and installing the TV in the attic might be a stretch, I do know of some people who have done just that. They are also the types of people who claim they never have enough time to catch up on their TiVo recordings but are always in great shape.
You don’t have to flip-flop your whole house around though. Simple things like making sure the home gym is well-lit and clean can go a long way. Also keeping the TV in a stereo cabinet with wooden doors can go a long way in making sure you’re not filling up too much time just surfing channels.
After all, if the body is a temple, the area you exercise is your place of worship and it should be treated as such. There is no need to burn incense and offer prayers though. If you keep the space a priority then exercise will be the priority.
Tip #4 – Surround Yourself with Goal Oriented Material
Place some cool fitness apps on your phone, hang posters up in the gym, and keep some books or magazines lying around that deal with your goals. Even subtle things like images on your desktop can keep the path you want to travel front and center in your mind so you never wake up one day and wonder what ever happened to your goals and ambitions.
The general idea is to set up your daily environment so that it’s easier to eat healthy and be active. If your environment is designed to make eating well and exercising more difficult, then you’re fighting an unnecessary uphill battle.
Keep your eyes open. We all have small changes we can make in our environment that can make staying in shape a heck of a lot easier.