How to Make Fitness a Priority

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fitness priority
Knowing you have to exercise is a whole different story from finding the motivation to actually do so. Here is how to make an exercise plan you actually want to stick to.
 

There are so many benefits to exercising, and yet so many people fail to make exercise a priority in their life. Exercise is a major component of living a healthy lifestyle, along with other things like maintaining proper nutrition. Living an unhealthy life can strongly increase your risk of disease and illness.

Doctors won’t criticize you for your lack of exercise, but they will stress the importance of exercise and eating right. However, most people aren’t motivated by just knowing the risks of living a sedentary lifestyle. There is a big gap between people knowing how important it is to work out, and making it a priority to actually do so.

Rather than just telling patients how important exercising is, research has shown that it would be more effective if doctors and health professionals were to actually teach people how to work out. Many people admit that they would likely exercise more if they knew a good way to fit a workout into their daily routine.

Decide What You Want to Get from Exercising

People are more likely to stay with their exercise plan if they actually have a goal motivating them to work out. If you make it a personal goal to lose weight to improve your health, it is easier to see the benefits of working out. Many people wait until it is too late to start working out, until their health has already started to fail and they are already experiencing health problems.

Many people are also motivated by setting a good example for others, such as their children or spouse. When you incorporate exercising as part of an overall healthy and positive lifestyle, working out seems less like a chore, and more like something that is definitely worth doing.

If you need some ideas to help keep you motivated and working out, here are a few tips:

  • Set goals that are achievement oriented: Just knowing that you want to start working out isn’t enough. Set a small and measurable goal so you have something to work towards. Be specific and set both a time frame and a weight loss amount.
  • Don’t reach too high: Too many people set goals that are too unrealistic and then get frustrated when they aren’t able to meet them. Setting a goal that is too large is just setting yourself up for failure. Choose a plan of exercise that is in line with your interests, your schedule, and your time commitments.
  • Make yourself accountable: Write down your goals and keep track of your progress in a journal is a good way to hold yourself accountable to your goals. You can even share your goals with a friend. People are more likely to stick meet their goals when they have shared them with other people.
  • Have a set plan: Set aside specific chunks of time to exercise, and write it down on your calendar or put it into your planner. Treat it just like any other important appointment.
  • Eliminate the barriers to working out: Many people have many reasons (some legitimate and some just excuses) why they do not work out. Figure out what those barriers are and find a way to overcome them. If you don’t have the money to join a gym, you could always try a free or low cost activity like walking or biking. If you don’t have a lot of time to work out, you could always just do a few minutes of exercise a few times a day. There are ways to work around every obstacle, you just have to get creative.
  • Work out with a buddy: If you make a plan to work out with a friend or family member you will be much less likely to ditch the workout. Friends can help keep you on track if you are struggling to find the motivation to stick with your workout goals.
  • Get professional advice: Working out for the first time can be intimidating. If you do not know your way around a gym, or don’t know what type of exercises you should be doing, a trainer would be a big help. Trainers can give you a plan to follow and exercises to do. A trainer won’t help if you don’t have the motivation to work out, but they can be an extremely good resource for people who want to work out but do not know where to start.

Getting fit isn’t something that happens overnight. Improving your health and fitness takes planning and dedication, but following these tips will help you get started and stick with it.

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