Exercise to stimulate, not to annihilate.
The world wasn’t formed in a day, and neither were we.
Set small goals and build upon them.
Physical fitness is not only one of the most important
keys to a healthy body,
it is the basis of dynamic and creative
John F. Kennedy
Fitness can be an elusive target. Most people want to be fit but many cannot quite seem to make it happen. The real challenge is that fitness can only be improved minimally on a day to da basisy, so it requires many, many days to really see a significant amount of improvement. And, that is where most people falter.
So, a better goal than trying to look like that guy in the picture, because you know, honestly, most of us won’t ever, is to make changes to make fitness a daily part of your life.
1. Make your fitness more social. It can be very hard to stick with your exercise if you try to do it all alone. Find an exercise partner or join a team sport. When you can share the time with others, you have something else to focus on besides how tired, sweaty, sore, and bored you are.
- If you don’t like team sports and don’t have anyone else to exercise with, there are other options. Join a social network related to fitness. It can be a great way to connect with other people who are in the same boat.
2. Only change one thing at a time. This is a difficult task in a world that seems to reward your ability to multitask, even though most people don’t do it well. Becoming fit requires adopting several new habits. However, for the best chance at success, it is highly recommended that you only adopt one new habit at a time. Breaking in new habits involve a lot of time, focus and energy. Pick one thing to fix. When that has become a habit, pick another.
3. Make it a priority. Have you found that you put off exercising because there are just too many other things going on in your life? The truth is that if you are going to be successful in this area of your life, just like in other areas, it has to be one of your top priorities. The truth of the matter is that the less enjoyable something is, the more it will have to be prioritized to get it done successfully.
- If you don’t have the time, you must create the space in your life to make it happen.
4. Find a way to enjoy it. Obviously, sticking with your fitness routine is going to be a lot easier if you enjoy the activity. So, find something you enjoy. Think about some of the physical activities you enjoyed as a child or in high school. It may not be practical to play tackle football anymore, but many organizations, like the YMCA, have flag football for adults.
- Another alternative is to take a specific activity and find ways to make it more enjoyable. For example, running might be a lot more fun if you train specifically for a road race and then race. You could also find new places to run. Or find a group of people to join for runs.
5. Take the first step. The single most important thing is to just get started! Avoid the ever-present temptation of having everything perfectly in place before you take a single step. Just throw on your shoes, take your behind outside, or to your treadmill aka clothes hanger, and go for a walk. Decide to skip the donut and have an apple instead. All fitness requires is simple decisions like these.
- You don’t need to plan your exercise routine for the next 6 months. You’re not trying to launch, or even ride, the space shuttle. You are just trying to move around more than you have in the recent past.
Getting in shape is the result of taking the proper actions repeatedly over an extended period of time.
Fitness doesn’t improve very much in a single day. So, making a habit of the behaviors that will improve your fitness must become a priority. Focus on making a single change at a time and attempt to make that change as enjoyable as possible.
You can do this!