How to Start a Successful Fitness Program – Part II
Hi, I’m Michelle. As Part II of Fed and Fit’s How to Start a Successful Fitness Program series, Cassandra invited me to write a guest blog about motivation. I am a 24-year-old life enthusiast who has had an obsession with “getting things done” since I first learned to walk, so I am proud to contribute a little something to the theme!
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Whether you’re close to Spring Break, are reading this article on the beach, or are back in the office post-vacation, you’re probably letting your workout regimen go, if you haven’t forgotten about it altogether.
I don’t like that. I know you don’t either.
So, let’s switch gears and refocus.
Whenever I feel like the laziest of all the lazy people in the universe, I employ a few methods to habituate my actions and get back on track:
1. Keep It Simple, and Do What You Like.
The last thing you need when you’re trying to get in shape is a huge to-do list. The longer the list, the more ways you can convince yourself that there are more important things to do than work out. Have one non-negotiable thing to do when it comes to your fitness program. “Go To Yoga Class Mondays at 7:30pm”, “Go For One 30-Minute Walk by 9am”, “Spend 1 Minute On The Treadmill.” Once you have a foundation set, your natural competitive drive will kick in — that’s when you will be ready to add more to your program. Also, do not be afraid to ENJOY how you get your exercise. Many people don’t exercise at all, so congratulate yourself for already being a step ahead of the masses.
2. Accountability System.
Join a community, online or offline. Get a friend to text you each and every morning. Tackle a fitness program with a person who is naturally more motivated than you. Be honest with yourself about how lazy you can get and what you need in order to fight your laziness. One friend pledged to pay me $50 every time he didn’t get to the gym. He paid me only ONCE in 2 months, because he had found the perfect way to motivate himself. Figure out what works for you, and do it.
3. First Thing In The Morning.
Get your fitness in as soon as you wake up. Less time for distraction. Drape your workout clothes on your dresser the night before, roll out of bed, put them on, and head straight for your front door. Trust me fully, it’s the only way. You’ll get used to it, I promise.
4. Track Your Progress.
This is the really fun part! Where you can actually SEE the fruit of your labor. The scale is tempting, but I’m going to strongly caution (especially if you are a female) against using it. Instead, use a tape measure on your body every week on the same day, and in the same areas. You can put a check-mark every day you exercise on your calendar and watch the numbers add up. Find a way to reassure yourself that whatever you’re doing is working. Your overall motivation will grow as a result.
5. Reward Yourself.
Get a massage once a month. Buy yourself new shoes or new clothes. Take yourself on a date. Think about what YOU enjoy and pamper yourself. You deserve this.
In short, your main focus should be to make it impossible to let any excuses prevent you from becoming the person you want to be.
Have fun with this entire process and BE SELFISH.
Every bit about a fitness program leads to an improved lifestyle for you. It’s a win-win situation. Why on Earth would you pass up such a golden opportunity?
In summary …