Exercising: the worst.
Am I right?
I mean, I’m not. Exercising is pretty much the best once it’s a part of your routine.
For most people who exercise, once you get started and get hooked on the endorphin rush of a really good workout, you don’t need any encouragement to get to the gym.
However, those are people who exercise. For people who don’t exercise, it’s the wooooorst.
I would know. I’ve seen every excuse there is about not going to the gym from beginners.
And look, I get it. It’s really, really hard to start exercising, especially if you haven’t in a long time, or never have in the first place.
But it’s worth it. It’s so worth it.
And with that in mind, I’m going to give you some tricks that will not only help you start exercising, they’ll help you keep going to the gym even though it’s raining/you just went last week/there’s a sale on ice cream at the store/your car is parked too far away/you just really don’t want to.
Ready? No? I don’t care. Let’s get started:
1. Start Off Small
You don’t have to run 8 miles to the gym and then work out for 90 minutes your very first workout.
In fact, that’s going to be a guarantee that you don’t go, or if you manage to do it, that you don’t come back.
Exercise isn’t all or nothing. It’s all about measuring yourself against yourself, and remembering that some exercise is better than no exercise.
So don’t bite off a huge chomp of exercise the very first time you start. Start slow, start small, start with baby steps, and go from there.
2. Find A Gym Buddy
A truth about human nature is that we tend to become more and more like the people we hang out with.
What does that mean for you?
Well, it means that if you spend your time hanging around couch potatoes, you’re going to become a couch potato.
The best way to get yourself going to the gym consistently is to find a friend who’s going to kick your butt if you don’t go, and you’ll do the same for them.
If none of your friends want to go to the gym with you, they’re lame. Plus you can find a buddy at the gym, or meet one at a fitness meetup. Either way, surround yourself with people who are into exercise, and you’ll find exercising to be much easier.
3. Write It All Down
This is one of the best ways to keep yourself consistent and have a reminder of how much you’ve accomplished.
Get a calendar and start putting a big black X through the days that you worked out. Write down your workouts in a log book.
Not only will it feel super satisfying to put that X on the calendar, after a while, you won’t want to break the string of X’s and you’ll feel motivated to go. Then, most of the work is done for you.
4. Start Off With What’s Comfortable For You
If money’s tight, but you really want to exercise, maybe don’t join a $100/month gym. Don’t worry about trying to find the perfect exercise plan.
Don’t buy a bunch of weights or a giant machine that you’re never going to use. Instead, look at your daily routine. Do you spend 20 minutes a day walking a pet or walking around the block?
That’s exercise! Instead of trying something radically new and different, build on what you’ve got. Walk for 10 more minutes. Or walk faster.
Keep building, and by god, you’ve got yourself some honest real exercise going.
5. Create Goals For Yourself
One caveat: these goals have to be attainable.
Now I know what you’re going to say: “but alex, all goals are attainable if you work for them!”
Yes. That’s true. But the goal of this article is to get you to stick to exercising. And an unrealistic goal doesn’t help that.
So pick goals that are reasonable for you. Maybe you want to fit in 10 more minutes of walking a day. Maybe you want to eat at least 2 servings of vegetables every day. Maybe you want to shave 3 minutes off your marathon time. I don’t know how in shape you are!
Whatever they are, make them reasonable, and make them consistent. Have something to reach for every week, then, when you hit it, make a new goal for the next week. The progress keeps you coming back.
6. Switch Up Your Routine
Technology is great. I’m going to be the first one to say technology is great, because I’m writing this on a magic internet box that beams the words straight into your eyeballs.
But it also makes us lazy. Like, really lazy.
Like, “Well, I’m picking up cookie dough from the store down the street – I’d better drive there.”
Make the effort to cut some of the laziness out of your life by going low-tech. Maybe take the stairs. Or walk/bike to work or to errands. Or run on a treadmill to power a generator to provide electricity to your house.
Maybe not that last one. But cut down on the tech to boost your exercise.
7. Find Out What You Like
Some people spend years exercising while staring straight ahead, or listening to music, and hating every second of it.
Then, they find themselves reading a really good trashy fantasy novel while they’re on the exercise bike, and boom. They’ve been biking for an hour before they even realize it.
Figure out how you like to exercise. Maybe you like listening to music. Or watching TV. Or watching all the Lord of the Rings movies back to back to back.
Whatever it is, find your muse, and follow it.
8. Put Exercising At The Top Of Your List
Look, I know we all give lip service to how important exercise is, and how sitting down all day is killing us, and we have to figure out how to work more exercise into our routines…
And then we sit down all day at the computer.
Fact is, if exercising isn’t a priority for you, instead of just “something important”, you’re never going to do it. So bump exercising up to the top of your list, and stick to it using the tricks and suggestions in this article.
Do it. Today!
Do you have any tips on how to motivate yourself to exercise? Let me know in the comments below!
The Best Ways To Get Started With Exercise
- Start off small
- Find a gym buddy
- Write it all down
- Start off with what’s comfortable for you
- Create goals for yourself
- Switch up your routine
- Find out what you like
- Put exercising at the top of your list