If you’re wondering how to start a workout routine that’s not only effective but lasting as well, know that you’ll need to set goals, make your fitness enticing, and have a “why” for beginning.
You see, many of us get the goal-setting part down but forget about creating a routine that’s both exciting and functional. We also tend to neglect the inspiring, deeper reasons for beginning a workout routine in the first place.
So in this article, we’re going to look over these 3 components of how to start a workout routine: goal-setting, making it fun and remembering “why” you started. This will help you accomplish your health goals into the new year and beyond!
How to start a workout routine: goal-setting
What is it you wish to achieve? Do you want to be able to run a certain distance, complete a triathlon, gain muscle, lose fat, or simply feel better? Whatever it is, make sure it’s both challenging yet reasonable, demanding yet reachable.
Completing the goal-setting itself should be a mindful process. Here are some techniques to use to make the goals feel more official and concrete.
There’s a psychological process that goes into writing. Journaling is characterized by greater cognitive processing. It’s a valuable tool for discovering the road forward and how to navigate any mental roadblocks.
Journaling is also a life-changing process that’s effective for goal-setting. Writing goals down makes them seem more “set in stone.” Try buying a new, separate journal for your goal-setting, routine, and progress. This will double the effectiveness of your journaling and will heighten the chances of you sticking with your goals.
Tell everyone about your goals
Telling friends and coworkers about your goals will hold you accountable.
The people you live with are the most important people to tell your goals to. Seeing them will remind you to be consistent. As a bonus, ask them to help keep you accountable.
Create goals that make sense
For those wondering how to start a workout routine that’s enjoyable and rewarding, be sure to create goals that make sense.
As an example, a good goal is to workout 5 days a week for an hour each day. Rather than setting a weight goal, you’ll be ensuring you’re just getting out there. That’s an important, worthy step in fulfilling a workout routine.
How to start a workout routine: make it fun
Truth is, as long as it’s fun and fitting for you, a workout routine could last a lifetime. A workout routine becomes fun when it consists of the ways you love to move most. While some people prefer an hour in the gym going full blast, other people prefer getting outside to do yoga in the grass or play sports. Whether you enjoy weightlifting, running, sports, yoga, or a combination of different activities—there’s a routine that’s fitting for you.
To make your fitness life fun, I suggest including various forms of movement and activities. As an example, let’s say your goal is to exercise five days a week. For two of those days, you plan to do light walking or other low-intensity activity, but for the other three days, you want to do something a little more strenuous. For the days you walk, skip the treadmill. Go outside. Walk through parks and on easy hiking trails instead. Try swimming, water aerobics, and yoga for variety. On the strenuous days, try using a variety of weight training, high-intensity interval training and more challenging cardio exercises such as stair climbing or running.
The key to making a workout routine fun is keeping it diverse. Change where you walk and how you walk. Walk fast; walk slow; walk with long strides; and walk up and down hills. Do different workouts in the gym. Focus on full-body weight training every other day or concentrate on a different muscle group each day. Try different sports that you’ve always wanted to try. The main point is to do things that will challenge your body in new ways. This will keep you interested and help your body avoid plateaus.
How to start a workout routine: remember “why”
Prioritize thinking about “why” you’re starting a workout routine. The “why” is different than the goal. It’s much deeper. For example, maybe your goal is to lose weight, become stronger, or to feel better. The “why” would be that you want to have more energy to better serve your family, or that you want to live to a very old age in order to serve your community for as long as possible.
Re-visit your journal and remember why you want to accomplish your goal. By remembering why you are trying to stick to a workout routine, you add emotional weight to your aspirations. Remembering why will help you on the days where you don’t feel motivated. It will help you harness your will power.
How to start a workout routine: extra tips
A habit is anything done repetitively enough to the point of becoming effortless. A workout routine can become a good habit, especially once the desired results start manifesting.
So far, we’ve talked about goal setting, making fitness fun, and remembering the “why” behind your new routine. When combined, the above tips will turn your desire for a more fit life into the necessary habits of actually achieving it.
There are more tips, though, and embracing these will awaken your motivation and will-power even more. Here are those extra tips:
- Sit down with a trainer who can help you curate a workout routine in alignment with your goals. Even better, complete a few of your weekly workouts with a trainer. This will help with direction, accountability, and motivation.
- Focus on eating better as well as exercising more. You’ll benefit from the extra energy, clarity, and lightness that comes with a whole food plant-based diet.
- Avoid perfectionism. This is extremely important. Trying to be perfect could cause you to abandon your pursuits entirely simply because you missed a day at the gym. Remember, this journey isn’t about being perfect. It’s about progress. The important thing is to get right back on track.
- Visualize your goals. Practice meditations that involve closing your eyes, becoming calm, and visualizing yourself as the fit, healthy, and active person you wish to become. Try to actually feel the emotions you will feel once you reach that point. Those emotions will probably involve a sense of serenity, accomplishment, and confidence.
There are many methods you can use to start (and keep) a workout routine. These extra tips are important add-ons to the more primary methods involving how to start a workout routine. By using these and others you might think of yourself, you will begin a new year of more wellness.
Interested in discovering more ways to enjoy a healthy lifestyle? Visit the TelMD Upstream blog!
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