Exercise comes in many forms, and there are countless ways to exercise while having fun and crushing your goals.
First, the most important thing is to get rid of excuses. Some of the most common excuses when it comes to exercising are, “I don’t have time” or “I do not like exercising”. Well friends, there are several ways around these excuses.
There are 168 hours in one week, and in order to implement a healthy and active lifestyle into your weekly routine, you only need roughly 2-3 of those hours per week…at most. This leaves you 165 hours per week to get your other tasks done. With 2-3 hours per week, you are able to implement a 30 minute workout session, 6 days per week, or a 40 minute workout session 5 days per week.
Now that we’ve gotten rid of the first excuse, let’s move on to the next…
If you do not like exercising, first ask yourself, “what type of exercising is it that I do not like?” Most people associate exercise with lifting weights at the gym, taking a class at the gym, or spending hours each week jumping from cardio machine to cardio machine.
However, exercising can be anything but that. Exercising can include various activities and fun hobbies that can be included in your exercise routine. It’s important to find ways to exercise daily as it keeps us thinking clearer, keeps our bodies healthy from the inside out, along with several other benefits that are attached to daily exercise.
Hiking or Biking with friends can be one of the best ways to exercise, without feeling like you are doing so. This is particularly true when you have beautiful scenery to look at and a new environment that you may not be used to. When our brain is focused on scenery, a nice conversation, or a new location, our brain will not focus on dreaded cardio as much.
Dancing is another great way to exercise, and to burn a ton of calories. Whether this means enjoying a night out with friends, or taking a dance class, this activity can be used as your daily dose of exercise. If you are serious about making this your form of cardio, consider wearing a heart rate monitor or fit bit so you are able to track your calorie burn and steps!
Water sports, Rock-climbing, Cleaning the house, playing volleyball, throwing a football, etc. can all be used to keep your heart healthy! If these activities do not seem appealing to you, there are many other ways to make exercising fun.
Exercise does not have to be going out and doing different activities each day. If you choose to work out in a gym, consider changing around your workout split, rep range, or training method to switch around your routine. This will challenge you and make your exercise program more interesting! If there is no plan going into the gym, then there is no challenge or structure, which can make it hard to stick to. Consider alternating between high rep and low rep weeks. For example, one week your leg day will be high rep more moderate weight. The next week would be low rep and heavier weights. This will also give your body a rest so you are recovered to increase intensity the following week. You might also decide to implement fast-paced conditioning routines such as adding mountain climbers, sled pushes, battle ropes, and more in between sets to challenge yourself. You could time yourself each round to beat your time the next workout. This will set a short term goal for yourself to motivate you each and every workout. These short terms goals may lead up to a bigger goal you have for yourself. If you need an extra push, try hiring a personal trainer. This will take the pressure off of you when deciding which workout split is right for you, and allows you to have help and accountability. However, this can be costly if you are planning to do this multiple times per week. If so, try splitting the time between a trainer and joining an exercise class such as Cycling, Zumba, kickboxing, swimming, or Pilates. Going to a class will force you to work harder than if you were by yourself, since you have other people with you working hard as well.
If setting a goal gives you energy to push harder each workout, then start setting multiple goals to strive for. One goal that works great for many people who struggle with motivation is entering a race such as a 5k or a triathlon. That way, there is a deadline in place. Having a specific deadline is helpful since you do not want to disappoint yourself, and you would like to do well. Possibly, through this you could find activities that are enjoyable for you.
If goal setting, activities, and group training does not work for you, taking a couple of weeks off of strenuous and mundane exercise might reset your body and mind and get you re-motivated. Sometimes we get caught in the same routine that it becomes tedious. Taking a week or two off to focus on stretching, low intensity yoga, and massage therapy could give you the break that you need to come back stronger than before. Breaks are not being lazy, but rather listening to your body and mind when you need the rest to recuperate.