Often the hardest part of starting an exercise regimen is just that, starting! I want to give you a few tips to start your fitness journey and to keep yourself on that journey. Fitness doesn’t have to be a chore or boring, it can actually be quite fun and rewarding. Get yourself motivated and jump into the best shape of your life! Here are some helpful ways to make exercising more enjoyable.
It is important to be real with yourself when you start exercising. Set realistic goals and you’ll be more likely to stick with your program. Many people start off with unrealistic goals and eventually run out of steam to keep going. When you set unattainable goals you tend to get overwhelmed and give up quickly. If you set small goals and continually hit those goals you can build on your progress. Little by little you will get to where you want to be. Don’t start off trying to workout for several hours every day. Try setting a more realistic goal such as working out for 30 minutes three times a week and then progress from there.
Track Your Progression
It is important to track your fitness progression in a notebook or even a blog. It’s important to remind yourself of where you were and how far you have come. It really helps to keep pushing forward especially on the days we don’t feel like working out. Seeing improvements, whether its improved reps, speed, time, or losing weight can boost your self-esteem and give you more motivation to get your booty in the gym.
Don’t Beat Yourself Up
If you end up missing a day or eating junk food, don’t beat yourself up about it. We win some and we lose some but we really lose when we give up. If you’re tired of starting over then stop quitting. As long as you keep going and trying you are on the right track. Remember, even if you walk a mile you are still over lapping everyone who is sitting on the couch. Give yourself some credit for making it to the gym and putting in the workouts that you are doing.
Comparison is Your Worst Enemy
Try to avoid comparing yourself to others. Not everyone is the same and everyone is fighting their own battle. Someone may have a great body but they could be struggling with self-esteem issues. Focus on your mind, body, and ultimately yourself. You can’t control the actions of others but you can control your own and your own life. You are in charge of YOU!
I’ve seen women look like Barbie dolls in the gym and yes I have had my days where I was quite jealous. However, I realized they work hard to look how they look and I can put hard work in too. I also realize everyone is created uniquely and special in their own way. I like who I am and I’m thankful for all God has blessed me with. What a boring world it would be if we all looked the same.
Surround Yourself With Supportive People
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, it’s extremely important to have supportive people in your life. I recently have had to cut certain people out of my life or distance them because they have been so critical towards me. I had people commenting about my hair, clothes, weight, and to be honest I just got sick of it. So I started surrounding myself around people who see the good in me and my potential. People who are proud of me, and cheer on my successes instead of looking at my past failures or short comings. I think it’s important to be a good friend like this to. As the old saying goes, treat people the way you want to be treated. You also reap what you sow. Just as a farmer plants seed, I truly believe we plant our own seeds and reap a harvest from them.
Make Fitness Fun
Working out doesn’t have to be boring. In fact, it can be quite fun. Continue to try fun activities and get others involved. Check out my article on fun summer workouts and get ideas about exciting activities you can do. I suggested volleyball, rollerblading, boxing classes, etc. It is important to find an activity you really enjoy and stick with it. I have tried Zumba classes in the past and really enjoyed those. Often you are having so much fun you forget that you are even working out and doing something healthy for your body. You can also meet new people and develop new relationships by stepping out of your comfort zone. If you don’t like going to the gym try taking a walk around your neighborhood or even doing house activities such as walking up and down the stairs.
Break Up The Routine
I know some people who split up their workout routines because it keeps them more motivated. Some people like to do their cardio workouts in the morning then do strength training at night. If you have the time, I’d say give it a try. I personally like to get my whole workout done at once and will go for one or two hours at least three days a week. I like to do my workouts then shower and enjoy the rest of my day and get other things done. Everyone is different though and that is the beauty of the world we live in. It can also help if you break up body parts each day. For example, I will do upper body one day then lower body and abs the next day. This makes it easier and more enjoyable for myself but again, it is personal preference for what works best for you.
Reward Yourself For Your Hard Work
Lastly, make sure you find time to reward yourself for your hard work. This always helps to keep me motivated. Whether its buying a healthy yogurt after a good workout or buying a new dress. I look forward to rewarding myself because I know I worked hard. I really enjoy buying new dresses or bathing suits and seeing the results from all of the hard work I put in at the gym. You can also reward yourself with a good movie or some pretty flowers to look at. It is nice seeing flowers on the counter that week and knowing that you earned something so beautiful by working so hard. Keep up the hard work and enjoy every day!