We’ve all got to start somewhere – especially when it comes to exercising.
When people try to get themselves stuck into regular exercise, that’s exactly what happens – they get stuck.
The enthusiasm wears off, and the reality of regular exercise being about more than just posting it on the ‘gram sinks in.
So, how exactly do you get started with an exercise routine and actually keep up with it?
Well, today, we’re going to talk you through doing just that, so you’ll be making gains and feeling great in no time.
But, first, why should you exercise regularly?
Benefits of Regular Exercise
You’re probably already aware that there are many benefits that come from regular exercise, but here are some of them to remind you:
- Increases your energy levels
- Helps to regulate moods
- Reduces anxiety and depression
- Makes it easier to manage stress
- Improves your physical health
- Promotes better sleep quality
In addition to the many mental and physical health benefits of exercise, it can also just be a whole lot of fun. But, if we’re aware of the upsides of exercise, why do we still struggle to actually get it done? Learn more about the benefits of regular exercise.
The biggest obstacles to exercising regularly
Sometimes our busy lives and schedules can make regular exercise so hard to commit to – it’s easy to say “I’ll do it after work” but when after work comes, we’re way too tired to actually do it.
If you’re suffering from a physical injury or disability, this can make exercising hard to do as well, as can being overweight or having lived a sedentary lifestyle for a long period of time.
Sometimes we’re just too self-conscious, embarrassed, or intimidated about the idea of getting into the gym, especially if we’ve never been before.
However, often the biggest obstacle to making exercise a habit is actually a mental one – our mindset.
Step into exercise with the right mindset
Starting off your exercise endeavour with the wrong mindset is setting yourself up for failure. To ensure you ditch the negative mindset and get started on the right foot, remember these tips:
1. Don’t be too harsh on yourself
When you’re not happy with how your body looks, your fitness levels, or your ability, it’s so easy to get down on yourself. When you’re too harsh on yourself, it can be all too easy to pack in the towel and give up on your exercise plans. If you’re kinder to yourself, and accepting that you’re not going to be great at everything that you try, and that you will make mistakes and unhealthy choices, youre much more likely to actually keep up with exercising and working towards your goals.
2. Don’t have an all or nothing approach
You do need to have some enthusiasm and motivation, however, having an “all or nothing” attitude towards your new workout routine is really setting yourself up for failure. If you miss a day or eat an unhealthy meal, this can enough to ruin your routine if you’re all gung-ho about it.
3. Be realistic about your expectations
When you start working out it can be frustrating if you don’t see results for a while. But it’s important to remember, losing your fitness doesn’t happen overnight, and neither does getting fitter. You need to be realistic about your expectations and not be discouraged if you’re not seeing the numbers on the scales drop. A little bit of exercise goes a long way, and is much more important than a number on the scales.
How to actually get started with a workout routine
Before you buy your new exercise kit, join a gym and sign up for a triathlon, it’s important to ease into exercising, especially if you’re never really done it consistently.
Here’s the steps you should take before and as you get started with working out regularly.
· Talk to you doctor
This step is particularly important if you’ve never exercised before, you have health concerns, or you’re recovering from an injury. Your doctor will be able to advise you of how regularly you should exercise or any movement restrictions or exercises you should avoid.
· Learn your limits by listening to your body
It’s so important to listen to your body. When you push yourself too far you can find it difficult to maintain a routine, or worse, you could injure yourself. When you start exercising for the first time in a while, it can take some getting used to, so start small, and if you’re body is in pain or discomfort, don’t push it, listen to it.
· Warm up and cool down
When you are actually starting to get into exercising and working out, it’s important to prepare and unwind your body before and after, each time. Stretching your body is super important, as it can help to prevent injuries and soreness.
· Fuel your body properly
A great diet and plenty of water will help to support your workout routine. If you’re not eating properly or enough, it can be exhausting, even when you’re not exercising. So, if you’re burning extra calories by exercise, you need to be feeding your body too.
What you can do to turn exercise into a habit
1. Start small and work your way up
We mentioned earlier about being realistic with your goals and routine, and it’s the best way to get started. A daily walk or exercising for 30 minutes 5 days a week sounds great in theory, but it can also be quite a lot when you’re getting started.
To really allow yourself the chance to get into the habit, take the pressure off and try to go for a walk around the block every second day. Soon, you will find yourself craving more. Perhaps a longer walk or more frequent ones. As the habit becomes more ingrained, you’ll find it easier to build momentum and stamina.
2. Choose exercises and activities that make you feel good
The worst thing you can do is to force yourself to do something that you don’t like. The mind is a very powerful thing and is great at associating negative feelings with the things that you’re doing at the time. And while you’re not going to enjoy every exercise, every time, it’s important to find something hat you enjoy doing. You’re more likely to stick to it then!
3. Reward yourself
Now, we’re not saying to give yourself a gold star for every day that you exercise or to buying yourself something new every other week. But it’s a good idea to have some simple rewards that can give you something to look forward to. Like a bubble bath at the end of the week or a new gym outfit after you can run for a kilometre without stopping. You don’t need to reward every goal reached, but having some reward systems in place will give you something to look forward to.
How to make exercise a lot more enjoyable
· Try new things
While the gym or a walk around the block are good places to start when it comes to working out, however, you don’t always need to do the same thing. You can try new gym classes or activities like horse riding, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, dancing, or pilates. There are so many different kinds of activities out there you don’t need to be bored.
· Work out with a buddy
Enlist the help of a friend when you exercise. Working out with a buddy can keep you accountable, make it easier to try new things, and they might even have cool tips and tricks to make exercising easier. Learn more about why a gym buddy is a great way to go here.
· Incorporate other things you enjoy
If you find yourself feeling bored on the treadmill or exercise bike, why not listen to a podcast or audiobook. You might find yourself dying to get to the gym so you can listen to the next episode or chapter.
Get Started by Signing up to Rec Xpress
If you’re wanting to get started with a regular exercise routine, then why not sign up to a membership here with us at Rec Xpress.
We offer you a safe and affordable environment to get your exercise game on. Our team has extensive experience in helping people get started with regular workout routines, and with memberships starting at only $13.95 per week for 24/7 access to our 6 south-east Melbourne locations it couldn’t be easier to get started today.