Today is National Running Day so it’s a good day to talk about not only running but exercise in general!
I just heard you grunt, sigh and roll your eyes.
Come on, let’s face it—exercise has SO many health benefits that cannot be disputed, and if you want anything that resembles good health, it is a must!
Now the problem most people encounter is that they get started on an exercise program, go gung-ho, then lose motivation and quit.
Well, here are some very effective strategies for exploding your motivation to move and finally sticking with an exercise program…
So, get your doctor’s OK, put your sneakers on, put these measures into place, and start enjoying a slimmer, stronger, sexier, healthier YOU!
How to (finally) stick with an exercise program
Make the time. We have the time for whatever we make the time for. Make the time for exercise.
Join a class. Classes can be a lot of fun and when you are having fun, you will find yourself looking forward to your workouts instead of dreading them.
Make your goals challenging but realistic. For example, if you started by running one mile, do not expect to suddenly run a half-marathon. Graduate to 2 miles, then a 5K, then maybe 5 miles, and eventually work your way up with more reasonable goals in between.
Get a buddy. You are far less likely to skip a workout if you have someone else counting on you to show up. And if none of your friends like to exercise, the dog can be your buddy.
Make sure you have enough energy. Lacking energy is most commonly a result of how good (or bad) your digestion is and/or being low in vitamin B12.
To help digestion, keep your meals simpler by avoiding the animal protein and starch combination. Eating proteins and starches together is extremely taxing on your system, and since nothing, your body does demand more energy than digestion, if your poor system is struggling with your meals, that leaves no energy for exercise. Enzyme supplements like Digestizol Max can also help support better digestion.
And if it’s B12 you may be running low in (and nearly one out of four of us is), Hydroxaden 2.5 vitamin B12 spray is a quick, convenient way to get what you need.
Track your progress and celebrate your little victories along the way. It is much easier to stay motivated when you look back and see how far you have come. I’m a third-degree black belt in karate, but I certainly did not get there overnight…and I celebrated every single tip and every new colored belt along the journey.
Place motivating quotes around your workout area. We have a treadmill in my office and there are signs on the wall that say things like, “When you feel like quitting, remember why you started,” “Making excuses burns zero calories per hour,” or my personal favorite, “Behind every fit woman is the butt she got moving to get her there.”
Listen to upbeat, motivating music. Create a high-energy playlist of music you like on your iPod, get your CDs out or listen to your rocking Pandora station of choice. A study of 41 overweight women who participated in a 24-week diet and walking program found that those who listened to their favorite music lost TWICE as much weight as those who exercised without music!
Watch TV. If you love TV, then put a set in your workout area. You can walk/run on a treadmill, pedal away on an exercise bike or use an elliptical machine as you are watching your favorite shows, sports events or movies.
Consider a personal trainer. There are independent trainers everywhere, including gyms and health clubs. Having to be accountable to someone else can increase your motivation to stick to your exercise routine.
Make two lists side by side. Fold a piece of paper in half the long way, title one side “Why I want to exercise” and the other “Why I do not exercise” and list as many items in each category as you can. You will soon be reminded of the numerous benefits of exercise, as well as expose what may be nothing but excuses for not doing it. Seeing the positives alongside the excuses will fuel your desire to overcome any weaknesses and get moving.
Pay attention to the other benefits that you are seeing from exercise too. These can include sleeping more soundly, having more energy during the day, lower blood pressure, less pain, lower cholesterol and triglycerides, less depression or anxiety and reduced stress!
Write down how you feel afterward. There is no better feeling in the world than going through a vigorous workout—your endorphins are firing away, you feel great about yourself and have a sense of accomplishment. Capture those awesome feeling in writing and read what you wrote on days when your motivation is lower.
This is a shot of me after running the Empire State Marathon last October—I can barely describe how incredible I felt.
OK, so now it’s time for YOU to get going!
Do it for yourself—you deserve it.
And I’ll be rooting for you all the way.
To your health,