Starting and sticking to a workout program doesn’t have to be rocket science or require herculean discipline. What it takes is making your quest to workout more personal to you by understanding why you are doing it; picking a workout plan that you actually like; and charting the course to do it. The rest of this post will show you how to execute these three steps.
Step One: Understand Why You are Doing It
The reason why you haven’t been able to stick to a workout program might be because you do not give this step the attention it deserves. Think about the process that you go through each time you don’t succeed at another workout program:
Knowing why you are embarking on your workout program can help short-circuit this cycle. Here is what this could look like:
Knowing why and regularly reflecting on it can keep two missed days from turning into the end of your quest.
Your why doesn’t have to be anything specific, it just has to be meaningful to you. Examples of some of the whys are:
Missing too many workouts will be difficult when you are honest with your motivation.
Step Two: Identify the Types of Activities You Like to Do
Choosing activities that you like will increase the likelihood that you will actually show up and do the workout. You can take different paths to identifying your favorite activities and here are some ideas:
Where you like to workout?
Answering these questions can clue you into the types of workout programs that would work:
How would you like to feel during the workout?
Your answers to these questions can help you determine the best type of workout to choose:
How you would like to feel afterwards?
Some words that come to mind are:
Think of this feeling as the reward that will keep you coming back to your workout. Here are some examples of how words like these can translate into a workout that you might like:
Step Three: Set a SMART Goal to Add at Least One Activity to Your Schedule
There are many variants of SMART Goals, but I subscribe to the one that stands for Specific, Measurable, Adjustable, Realistic, and Time-Specific when it comes to working out. Your SMART goal allows you to know what you are trying to achieve and also helps you know when you have achieved it.
Use these three steps to set a SMART goal to help you make working out a habit. You can choose to start with a simple activity such as walking, and as far as you stay consistent you will see results that are in line with why you chose to start working out in the first place.
EJ (Ejiroghene) is a Lifestyle Coach and owner of the Team by EJ Ogenyi LLC. She helps busy women lose weight without taking their eyes off their other priorities - their families, their careers, their wallets, and their lives. She is a Certified Personal Trainer and Nutrition Coach and she enjoys bringing her skills and her experience losing weight herself to the awesome task of helping her clients create healthy lives and bodies that they absolutely love. She is also a wife and mama to a beautiful little boy.
Faith A. Coleman, MD