Healthy living is something we all strive for but it can be hard to stay consistent enough to attain it. Just as soon as we start going to the gym again or getting out for a run, we are hit with a terribly busy week and before we know it, all the progress we’ve gained is gone.
Here are four ways to stay consistent with working out to reap the rewards.
1. Set long-term goals.
It’s easier to exercise when there is a specific goal we want to reach. Maybe it’s to attain that bikini body for the summer or to have a slim stomach so you can wear vacation clothes. It doesn’t matter why you want to get in shape, but it’s important to have a point you want to get to.
Make a concrete date to reach this goal. Don’t become unrealistic. Allow yourself time to reach these goals. You won’t get the abs or a skinny waist overnight. But having an image of where you want to be can make you more motivated to exercise.
2. Choose short-term rewards.
Long-term goals are great alone, but often they can feel too ambitious or too far off, which can affect your motivation to pursue them.
The best remedy for this is to create short-term rewards to get the workouts done from day to day. It may sound childish but giving yourself a treat whether that’s a Netflix show or a cookie can boost your motivation. Place these good looking rewards behind your workouts. If you want to watch that Netflix show or that delicious cookie, you have to exercise first.
This will help distract you from the dread of exercising because you are too focused on the treat that will be waiting for you afterwards. It may just be the thing to get you up and moving on a regular basis.
3. Pick the right time.
Everyone’s schedule looks different. Stop trying to fit your workout time into the schedule of one of your friends or a exercise guru on YouTube. This won’t help you achieve consistency. It is exactly this jamming of the wrong puzzle piece into a spot that makes you want to stop working out.
Find a time that works best for what your life demands. If you can’t exercise in the morning, do it in the evening before you go to bed. Too tired at night? Get up an hour early and get it done before school or work. When you find the right time to exercise, it will help you create a rhythm that will be harder to break.
4. Find an accountability partner.
We all have the tendency to get lazy. You’ll have some days where the thought of working out will feel like torture. When we are the only ones that know our goals it’s easy to let ourselves slip out of commitment. Who else would know?
Instead of letting yourself off the hook, add a friend or family member into the equation. Tell them of your goals and how you want to exercise consistently. You might text them every day after you’ve finished working out or maybe they can text you every other day to see if you have stayed consistent. Talk about the ups and downs and the good and bad days. Bringing someone into your work-out goals is key to being consistent.
Exercising consistently can feel intimidating or even impossible. However, it is possible to succeed if you put in the necessary fail safes. Set a long-term goal and a short-term treat to help with your motivation. Find the right time and people to support you through the process.
Above all else, if you have a strong desire to reach your goal, hold yourself accountable as you reach for your goals. It’s possible to become consistent with exercise once you incorporate the right measures to promote it.