Is it possible to love exercise, even when you hate it?
I really admire people who are completely committed to exercise at all costs – this is where I want to get to myself, and preferably it would be better if I began to love exercise, rather than just feeling that I have to do it.
So, for those of us who struggle with flagging motivation, here are a few suggestions:
#1 Take it slowly – don’t get too overwhelmed by the thought of exercise. It’s best to begin slowly, by starting with 10 minutes each day, building up to perhaps 30-40 minutes at a time. Check out A Bit by Bit Approach to Exercise.
#2 Think of exercise as “me time” – exercise should be a time when you allow yourself to chill out, reflect, and de-stress from the days events, so enjoy it, it’s your time!
#3 Move more – take every opportunity to go out of doors, it will make you feel healthier and happier. Why not take the dog for a 10 minute walk? Or go for a short stroll after dinner this evening.
#4 Find an activity that you enjoy – this really goes without saying, but if you enjoy what you’re doing, it will be so much easier. Perhaps you could try gardening, hill walking, swimming, or tennis – just remember it doesn’t have to involve a gym, or a structured exercise programme, merely a little more movement than usual!
#5 Try a stationary bicycle – exercise in front of your favourite TV programme, read a book or magazine, or listen to music while you cycle your way to better health.
#6 Take up an extreme sport – if you like things a little more adventurous, how about downhill mountain biking, skateboarding, or surfing?
#7 Download audio workouts using iTunes – many people have found these to be invaluable in providing the necessary motivation to complete their workout. Why not give it a go?
#8 Try out PlayStation’s range of fitness programs and dancing games.
#9 Exercise with purpose – jog to the grocery store to buy a couple of items, cycle to the book store, or walk to necessary appointments, such as dentist, doctor etc.
#10 Make sure you have the right gear – whether it’s great trainers, trendy clothing, or the latest exercise gadgets, having the right gear can really make a difference to how you feel.
#11 Consider competing in a charity event – this will completely change your motivation; rather than simply trying to lose weight or get fit, you’ll be accomplishing something larger, and you’ll feel fitter to boot. How about running 10K for Cancer Research?
#12 Join an exercise class – group workouts provide great moral support, a chance to make new friends, and get fit, all at the same time.
#13 Purchase an exercise DVD – choose something you really enjoy, such as pilates, step aerobics, or Tae-Bo.
#14 Crank up your iPod with a few select tunes. You’ll need at least 6-7 songs for a 30 minute workout. Check out In the Gym if you need help making your choice.
#15 Get off the train or bus one stop early and walk the rest to work, the shops, or home. You can gradually build up towards a level that suits you.
#16 Take up running – check out How to Become a Runner in Just 10 Weeks, for an easy to follow plan, which begins small, building up gradually each week.
For tips on how to exercise when you don’t want to check out this post.
What are your exercise tips? We’d love to hear what really works for you!