Countless women resolve each year to stick to an exercise program that will not only improve their looks but also boost their overall well-being.
But a good fraction of them never make it to the end of the first month for a lot of reasons, be they valid or not!
Although exercising is definitely enjoyable, it’s easy to slack off after a few days, especially when our muscles start aching or there’s nothing to look forward to but the same old repetitive steps day in and day out.
But life is too short to keep putting off something as important as fitness. Don’t despair — there are several ways to make exercising more exciting and fun to ensure that you’ll reach your goal within your target period:
1. Get An Exercise Partner
Forget about keeping your efforts a secret from your family and friends unless you have very strong willpower to see your project through.
More often than not, it’s the sense of community that keeps gym rats going and is primarily the reason why tons of exercise equipment gather dust at home. Invite your spouse, best friend, neighbor, or even sex partner — it might even spice up your sex life!
2. Exercise To The Music Of Your Choice
The advent of iPods has made it easier for us to take our favorite music wherever we go. You can program these little gizmos to play a different set of tunes each day for weeks.
If your cardio is walking, for instance, you could find music with specific beats per minute online, or you could combine your own.
Beginning walkers could listen to music at 118 steps per minute; intermediate at 126; and advanced at a brisk 134 steps per minute. Baby Boomers enjoy the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s music; the
younger generations have their own genres. There’s even cool-down music to plant your feet back on the ground after a cardio high.
3. Hang Photos Of Yourself On The Wall
And I don’t mean just any kind — I mean one “before” image — which is how you look now; and an “after” image, which is what you’ll look like after the timeframe you set.
So how do you do this?
Get yourself “morphed” on a computer by a graphic artist. Attach your face on the body of a goddess or a voluptuous celebrity. You’ll be surprised how visuals can positively affect your
4. Maintain A Journal Of Accomplishments
You have most likely set a goal for yourself before starting your exercise regimen. Regardless of how insubstantial it may seem to you, it helps to write about your little achievements and your feelings about keeping fit.
Track your daily progress by writing down the exercises you’ve done and the reps you have made. Aim for the next level if you feel you’re up to it, and keep raising the bar each time.
5. Occasionally Do Something You Like
The word “occasionally” is there because to accomplish something we can be proud of, we need to sacrifice a little — which means there can really be some things that aren’t palatable to us, such as doing “X” number of reps or doing an exercise for “X” number of minutes.
However, no one said we can’t alternate these workouts with activities we enjoy doing most, such as roller blading or bike riding.
6. Hire A Personal Trainer Or Coach
If you’re the type of person who needs someone breathing down her neck in order to accomplish something, so be it.
Hire someone so obsessed with keeping fit that he’ll make you feel extremely guilty about missing a session. In addition, his or her physique will always be in front of you, which is a fantastic motivator any time.
7. Listen To Motivational Tapes
Your “background music” doesn’t always have to be something you can dance to. It can be a charismatic speaker talking about how you can be the master of your body or how you can do whatever it takes to achieve something you’ve set your mind on.
8. Divide Your Exercises
Doing your favorite aero or cardio doesn’t have to be done in a single, uninterrupted session a day. You can wake up half an hour earlier than usual, split the workout into a 30-minute session in the morning and another during your lunch hour or early evening.
9. Reward Yourself
For every little accomplishment, such as a few pounds lost in two weeks, half an inch off your waistline, or an improved heart rate — treat yourself to non-food perks like a foot massage or
new Victoria’s Secret underwear.
10. Read, Read, Read
Check out books, magazines, and websites that teach you about the latest trends in the exercise world. Learning about like-minded individuals makes for great motivation to continue what you have started.
Join online forums on fitness as well. You’ll find that for every 1 member on the verge of calling it quits, there’ll be 9 others encouraging her to see her program through!