IT’S BEHAVIORAL INERTIA
Becoming motivated and staying motivated are the most important keys to successful fitness routines, as well as for success in any other endeavor I can imagine.
It isn’t always easy to develop, nor can we assume it will be easy to sustain once we get started.
“Daily fitness motivation” does not necessarily suggest daily workouts, just the frame of mind to stay with a healthy program.
Personally, I do daily workouts of about 20 minutes each. On one day, I do bodybuilding with high reps and lighter resistance. On the next day, I do physical therapy movements for my back. This is before breakfast every morning. My routines and activity have changed drastically over about seven decades.
There is nothing difficult or mysterious about fitness routines per se. We simply repeat movements that activate and strengthen our muscles and/or give us cardiovascular benefits.
But…it is well known that many people are able to stay with the routines, while others are not. Some are not even able to (or persuaded to) even start.
The presence or absence of motivation accounts for the difference.
The remainder of this post will present ways to develop and keep motivation, as well as some types of equipment to make this easier and more pleasant.
BE AWARE OF THE BENEFITS OF EXERCISE
It is certainly motivating to know that we are contemplating doing something that is healthy for us. The Mayo Clinic tells us that exercise:
- Helps us to control our weight
- Enables us to combat illnesses and conditions, such as stroke, high blood pressure, depression, arthritis and many types or cancer
- Improves our mood
- Promotes better sleep
- Improves our sex life
- Gives us a social outlet and source of fun
AVOID USING EXCUSES
It is very easy to put off exercise routines or other activity, but why would we do so? A 30-minute exercise routine represents 2% of our day. This leaves us 98% for other pursuits. Is this asking too much?
Yes, we should set goals. They should be SMART goals. SMART goals are:
A decision to begin workouts “if I find time” is no decision at all. It is wise to start with small goals. We are then energized as we meet them.
It is essential to choose an activity that is enjoyable. We are more likely to continue with something that we consider to be fun. In my recent post on Sofia Vergara, I found that she really hates gym workouts, though she does them anyway. She prefers dancing or jumping on trampolines. She is an endomorph who likes to eat cake. Does that bode well for staying in shape as she ages? No, it doesn’t, yet she is now 50 and in excellent shape. She is motivated and works hard.
Keeping a diary of our physical activity or calories consumed is crucial to our continued success. My personal choice has been to record my exercise sets, weight, blood pressure and calories consumed per meal every day.
I have often heard that it is best to weigh once per week, since weight fluctuates and may mislead us. I realize this, but still weigh every morning.
Later in this post, I will list some tracking methods and devices that are available through Amazon and elsewhere.
ENLIST A PARTNER
Many of us do better if we have a supportive partner with whom to train or play a sport. Energy can be shared and the social aspect may keep us going.
I use a treadmill at home and can’t imagine doing this without music.
MAKE PERIODIC CHANGES
If we are doing resistance workouts, it is helpful to change the type of equipment from time to time. Also, we can benefit from changing the specific movements or the sets and reps.
TAKE REST DAYS
To avoid burnout and to give our muscles a better opportunity to grow, it is advisable to take rest days. This is especially true if we are doing workouts. Remember – muscles don’t grow as we are working them. We are tearing down tissue, which is replaced with stronger tissue as we rest.
When we meet a goal, it is helpful to give ourselves a treat. This is not to suggest that we should celebrate weight loss with a huge meal. Maybe we should consider getting a massage, a new pair of athletic shoes or a new piece of exercise equipment.
As an Amazon associate, I may use their links within my articles and benefit from any sales from those links. This does not have any effect on pricing. With Amazon links, you receive information on prices, reviews, other details and similar options at different prices.
Here are some links that are relevant to today’s subject matter:
Food and workout journal – this gives us a diary for daily entries as well as a source of motivation
Fitbit Versa 2 health and fitness smartwatch – track heart rate 24/7, steps, distance, calories burned, time asleep
Nordic Track treadmill – I use this model at home. It is not the most expensive, but has lasted well for many years for me.
Resistance bands with handles – these give us plenty of resistance for strength building, yet are easier on our joints than barbells or dumbbells
THE FITTRACK DARA SCALE
This may be the ultimate tracking device available anywhere. We can measure 17 internal health metrics by simply stepping on the scale.
Again, motivation is essential to our fitness journey and accountability to ourselves keeps us going. There is nothing difficult about establishing a fitness routine, nor is it necessarily very time-consuming.
Isn’t 2% of our day for better health and longer life a good investment of our time?
Before I leave, let me post one more Amazon link. This is for a home trampoline, used by many for cardio since it is fun and effective.
Please consider a lifestyle of fitness and health. You will never regret it!
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