For most people, getting motivated to exercise is tough. The idea of just stepping outside for a brisk walk or run seems so difficult for many people. What stretches should I be doing? Am I wearing the right clothes or shoes? What kind of fitness tracker do I need?
If you’re like most Americans, you aren’t getting the recommended 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day. There are a lot of reasons for this – busy lives, intimidation, slow results and a lifetime of bad habits are just a few things that cause people not to move enough. You might even think that because you can’t commit to a full 30 minutes of activity, then making the move to move just isn’t worth it.
So how do you get over these roadblocks and start getting healthier? Begin to stretch your definition of what it means to exercise. Finding something you like doing is a great first step. If you hate running, you’re going to look for every reason not to do it. But if you really like step class or even working in the yard, focus your workout efforts there. There are so many ways to be active, so find one you really like.
Setting goals and rewards is another way that helps some people. Write down your goals on a slip of paper and put it in a place you will see it. Be realistic with it and come up with benchmarks you can reach. Even if it’s just walking for 10 minutes a day, 4 days a week to start out with, you can always reevaluate the goal after a couple weeks and change it up. Stretch your thinking in terms of rewards – a movie, a new pair of running shoes – maybe a new nail polish you’ve had your eye on.
The bottom line is, just start moving and it will become easier if you can stick with it. If you don’t have an hour to workout, but could squeeze in a 20 minute power walk, do it. Ditch the all or nothing attitude, stretch your definition of what it means to exercise and know that every little step helps when it comes to your health.