Planning is key to developing & maintaining an exercise routine. When you make an exercise plan, consider any ongoing health concerns you may have, the time you have available to exercise, & your energy & stress levels.
Many people feel fatigued from all the pandemic-related stress, so if you’re still juggling teaching your kids from home & working, or are unemployed & worry about your finances, this may not be the time to undertake a challenging new fitness plan… Baby steps!
Whatever your situation is, set reasonable goals focusing on activities you enjoy. You’re more likely to stick to a plan if you start small, celebrate your successes, & build it up gradually.
People who put their health & fitness on the same calendar as their regular appointments tend to stick to their plan. You wouldn’t cancel an appointment with your doctor because you were busy with work or just didn’t feel like it at that moment, would you? You’re more likely to fulfil your obligation & then return to work afterwards.
Many people who maintain a long-term exercise program workout in the mornings.
Completing your fitness routine in the morning can energize you & set a positive tone for the rest of the day… It also gets it out of the way!
Some may find it beneficial to take a short break from work & get moving in the afternoon when their energy is feeling low. A burst of activity can stimulate the brain & help you push through the rest of the tasks on your to-do list.
Rather than aiming to “get in better shape,” set a specific time orientated goal such as “walk 30 minutes in the morning on Monday/Wednesday/Friday”.
Try a fitness tracker or apps available to keep a record of your progress or simply use a calendar so you can remember the length of your workout, distance, & effort level (even if it’s a rubbish workout, you still did it, good for you!).
Tracking your progress can help keep you accountable, provide a sense of accomplishment, & encourage you to keep going.
Tell a friend what your goals & routines are or post them on social media to keep yourself accountable. You’re less likely to skip a session if you know your friends will be asking about how you got on.
As I‘ve mentioned in a previous article, working out with a buddy can also help keep you on track, even when you can’t be physically together. Set up regular times to exercise with each other via a phone or video call & offer each other support and encouragement.
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