For a large majority of us, we often find ourselves unable to maintain a fitness regimen. There are numerous excuses as to why we struggle to hold onto this simple, yet complex idea. I have compiled below, my 10 favorite strategies to maintain and execute a fitness program.

 

  1. Exercise buddy- I have seen hundreds of active minded people use this as their sole reason to keep to their health. Some people I know simply cannot exercise alone and RELY on this everyday! Whether it is meeting at the gym, a running buddy, fitness classes,etc. Find a partner in crime to hold you accountable and you will notice more consistency I guarantee!
  2. Morning- I myself like to exercise first thing in the morning. For starters, it can rev up your metabolism, help wake you up for a busy day ahead, and more importantly you are more likely to keep to your plan if you exercise first thing in the morning. We live busy lives, and emergencies can come up as the day progresses so I advise to get in done first thing and you won’t have it hanging over your head the rest of the day!
  3. Write it down- Keeping an exercise journal is an easy way to hold yourself accountable. Don’t just write down what you did for today, but also include what the next week or maybe even 2 weeks will look like. This can turn into a check list of sorts and you can just scratch off what you have completed it.
  4. Social Media- Sometimes we can be annoyed with the constant bombardment of posts people will put on their Facebook page, but if this is a way to hold yourself accountable, then go for it! I have several clients that have gotten into this, and it can create quite a dialogue amongst friends as well as encourages others to keep to their exercise plan!
  5. Sign up for a race- Once again another favorite of mine. Whether it is truly for monetary reasons, or friendly competition amongst friends, this can really keep you sticking to that plan! You don’t have to sign up for a marathon so to speak, but it might be something like a cancer fundraiser walk, or maybe even a MS bike ride. The options are endless and it will keep you focused on the task ahead.
  6. Food journal- This concept has been around for years now. The basic premise is to keep a food journal of what you eat daily and then look back and see what your nutrition is like. Not only will you find positive and negative patterns with your food intake, but it will also raise awareness of what your eating and statistics show that the more healthy foods you eat, the more likely you are to stick to an exercise plan as well. The 2 go hand in hand and will never fail!
  7. Help- After more than 15 years in the fitness industry, I can tell you that  3/4 of the clients I have helped through the years hired me solely to help them stay accountable. This compares to number 1 on our list, but the knowledge you gain from a fitness professional is priceless and can help work out any unhealthy kinks you might have in your overall health.
  8. Priority- Sometimes life can get in the way of our health and that is a shame. If you don’t have time to exercise just 30 minutes a day, then you might want to re-evaluate your day to day schedule and make some changes. Not only will you be more productive by a little bit of exercise, but if you don’t maintain your health then you will be using all that hard earned money your saving for retirement to maintain your health later in life. You don’t have to be a slave to exercise, but just be consistent and your health will be compensated!
  9. Mix it up- We have all been guilty of this, myself included where we do the same exercises each and everyday. Unless you actually LOVE the same exercise you do everyday, then I suggest you mix it up and do something different. I like to let the seasons dictate my exercise, where as in the winter you can do things like ski, or exercise inside maybe if the weather is too cold and then in summer you can get back outside to your daily walks or if you live somewhere like Texas you can hit the pool and swim some laps due to the 100 degree weather outside.
  10. Family- This is a strategy that tends to work well for my age bracket or even those younger or my parents age. If you are 40 years old and have children and don’t exercise, then you better start. If you want to be around for your kids now and in the future to see their own kids then you might want to get going. If you are younger, you can look up to maybe certain family members you have that you can use a role model for yourself to keep at it. If you are older and in the last 3/4 of your life, then keeping to your exercise plan will simply make you feel better, as well as keep your cognitive skills sharp.

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