How to Choose & Force Yourself to Exercise

 Ever wanted to exercise, but you just couldn’t force yourself to do it?  Here are some tips on how to make it easier.

Exercise doesn’t come easily for everyone. Like anything else in life, the more you practice the better you’ll get at it. The trick is that first time off the couch and into exercising! Here are some things that might help give your new exercise routine a boost:

Keep A Journal

Keeping a journal of all your workouts can really help motivate yourself to go out and achieve your goals. It will also serve as an invaluable resource when trying to track your progress, especially if you start getting stronger or faster. You don’t have to type or write long-winded passages, just have a sheet of paper you can write down the date, what exercises you did, how many sets and reps, your perceived level of exhaustion/how hard it was to push yourself, etc.

 Reward Yourself

This is one of my favorite tips. After every workout, I would give myself some kind of treat that had nothing to do with being healthy or exercise! It doesn’t have to be anything big or expensive, just something that makes you feel good for putting in all that work. Personally, I liked getting my nails done – this way I felt better about myself AND saved money on gym visits the next month! Go out and get a movie ticket or rent a DVD from Netflix, buy your favorite dessert (just don’t eat it all in one sitting), or even just relax on the couch for a few minutes. Whatever works best for you, remember that you deserve to take some time off after the work you put in!

Remember There is no “right” way

Don’t worry about what other people are doing or what they think – if there’s even one person who snickers at your workout regimen, leave them!  You’re not working out because of anyone else but yourself, so don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. It does help to have someone to exercise with though – whether it be a partner, friend, or family member. This can be extra motivating and will allow both of you to hold each other accountable for completing the workout.

Get a Workout Partner

Working out with a partner is similar to having someone to exercise with, but it’s also very different. The two main differences between the two are that your workout partner will help push you to do better and they might serve as a distraction from the burning sensation in your muscles or joints.  If you don’t know anyone who wants to exercise with you, try posting an ad at one of these websites: Craigslist (don’t forget to be safe when meeting up!) FitLocate or CouchSurfing. Many people post-workout partners on these sites and then meet up for an hour or so in order to get fit!

Pay Attention To Your Breath

Focusing on how your breath feels as you work out can help with the burn.  It has been scientifically proven that focusing on your breathing actually helps reduce pain. For example, if you are doing squats – breathe in through your nose for 5 seconds, don’t let the breath out until you have completed your squat. Hold it for a second or two and then exhale slowly through your mouth as you straighten up.

Focusing on your breathing will also help calm yourself down when you feel like giving up.  Just keep telling yourself it’s only 10 more squats before you’re finished!

        Set Goals Just like anything else in life, setting goals is very important.  If you know what type of results to expect from exercising, then you will feel more encouraged to stick with it.  Most people know that each exercise is just one step closer to achieving their fitness goals :

– lose weight

– tone up

– build muscle etc.

You’ll be on your way to reaching those goals before you know it!   

 Remember

You Deserve It Whether you want a flat stomach or toned legs, remember that no one is stopping you from getting what you want! Go out and get what you deserve by putting some work into it. No one else but yourself will ever truly appreciate the effort as much as you do – so give yourself credit for your hard work and dedication! Don’t forget that everyone has good days and bad days when exercising; but eventually, the good days will outnumber the bad.   

If you are not sure how to start working out or what type of exercises you should be doing, do some research! There are many different websites, books, and DVDs that provide workout suggestions, tips, and information. You can also ask your doctor for specific exercise regimens that might benefit your particular health needs.

Get motivated today! Remember that anything worth having takes time – but it’s all worth it in the end!

 Various ways to motivate oneself to work out. Suggestions include a workout partner or a trusted friend, focusing on breathing during the exercise, and setting goals that one intends to reach. Also included is some safety information for those who plan on meeting new people through websites such as Craigslist for their workout partner. These suggestions are meant to be helpful and not meant to replace medical guidance from a doctor or physical therapist. Please consult with your physician if you have any questions about working out or need help creating an effective workout regimen. If you feel dizzy, nauseous, in pain, or anything else abnormal from exercising, stop what you’re doing immediately!

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