If it's hard to find time for exercise, don't fall back on excuses. Schedule workouts as you would any other important activity. You can also slip in physical activity throughout the day. Be creative! Take the dog for a walk. Take the stairs instead of the elevator at work. Pedal a stationary bike or do strength training exercises with resistance tubing while you watch TV at night.
Are you hoping that exercise will help you lose weight? Boost your energy? Sleep better? Manage a chronic condition? Improve your mood? Write it down! Seeing the benefits of regular exercise on paper may help you stay motivated.
If you're working out regularly, good for you. Keep it up! It may help to keep an exercise diary. Record what you did during each exercise session, how long you exercised and how you felt afterward. Keeping track of your efforts can be a good reminder that you're making steady progress toward your fitness goals.
After you exercise, take a few minutes to savor the good feelings that exercise creates. Reflect on what you've just accomplished. This type of internal reward can help you make a long-term commitment to regular exercise. External rewards can help, too. When you reach a longer range goal, treat yourself to a new pair of walking shoes or new tunes to enjoy while you exercise.
If you're too busy to work out or simply don't feel up to exercise, take a day or two off. Be gentle with yourself if you need a break. After all, it's OK to be flexible. The important thing is to get back on track as soon as you can.
Sure, you can exercise on your own. But if you're not jazzed by solitary workouts, branch out. Invite a friend, neighbor or co-worker to join you. Work out with your partner or your kids. Take a class at a local fitness center. Maintain your motivation with social support.
Is a gym membership or home exercise equipment too pricey? Consider cheaper options for getting in shape. You can base a fitness program around brisk daily walks for aerobic exercise and pushups or squats for strength training. Or consider picking up some inexpensive hand-held weights or resistance bands. Check the local recreation department to see if they offer discounted fitness classes.
Time spent at home doesn't have to be couch potato time. Fit more physical activity into your home life with these tips: 1. Wake up 30 minutes early. Use the extra time to walk on your treadmill or take a brisk walk through your neighborhood. 2. Gather a group. Ask friends or family to join you for a walk after dinner or on a Saturday morning. 3. Be active while watching TV. Use resistance bands or do pushups or squats during your favorite show. 4. Involve the whole family. Ride your bikes. Take a trip to the pool. Have fun.
Exercise doesn't have to be drudgery. And you don't need to go it alone. Sign up for a group exercise class or join a softball, soccer or volleyball team. Work out with a friend at a health club or gym. Start a walking group with friends and neighbors.
Sure, you're busy at work. But it may be possible to be more physically active on the job. Consider these ideas: 1. Walk or bike to work. If you ride the bus, get off a few stops early. If you drive, park your vehicle a few blocks from your workplace. 2. Take the stairs whenever you can. 3. Trade your coffee break for a walking break. 4. Start a lunchtime walking group with your co-workers. 5. Look for opportunities to get moving during the day, such as taking a walk around your office.
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