MOTIVATION MAY COME AND GO
But it is essential to a productive workout routine. We will be bolstered by the following:
- Weight control
- Better cardiovascular health and function
- An improved self-esteem
- Better overall health
- A more attractive physique or figure
This is often sufficient motivation for us to work out, no matter what time of day.
It helps to set reasonable goals. Goals should be specific – to lose 5 pounds by next month, not to “try to lose some weight”. I remember having specific weight lifting goals – to lift my weight in a military press, to bench press 300 pounds.
We may be motivated by segmenting our 24 hour day into workout time and other time. If we commit to a 30-minute workout every day, plus 8 hours of sleep, we will still have 97 % of our day for everything else. With that perspective, we may more likely understand the value of time management.
If we do 30 minutes of exercise per day, we will be ahead of the 150 minutes per week of exercise recommended by the American College of Sports Medicine.
It is often beneficial to work out with friends. These friends may provide inspiration. Also, workouts may become social activities and lots of fun. I played tennis for many years, within a kind of “tennis fraternity” of friends at similar levels. We remained friends even when we had highly competitive matches in local tournaments. We also had a tennis “team” to play other cities, 6 singles matches and 3 doubles matches. I never considered any of this to be “exercise”.
This raises another motivating factor – choose exercise that you enjoy! It may be strange to some, but I always enjoyed working out with weights. Other “iron pumpers” will understand this.
I really like the wisdom and simplicity of the words in the image below.
My personal preference is to work out in the morning. This is partially because I do intermittent fasting. My breakfast is around noon or later. I didn’t begin the intermittent fasting until I was well into my senior years, when my workouts were less strenuous. I have at least 8 ounces of water before beginning my workout.
Here is my prior post on intermittent fasting.
I like to get my daily workout completed before my breakfast and as early as I can. It is nice to complete this daily “task”in the morning. I will then have no need to worry about fitting it into my day later on.
There are many other reasons to do a morning workout. Hopefully, these will be motivating.
Those who are working and who wake up an hour earlier for a workout are generally the same ones who will be consistent and successfully meet their goals. This is because they are creating a healthy habit. They will have no need to try to find an exercise time later on, when they may be tired or involved with more demands upon their time.
Working out in the morning sets you up for success, but there are a few guidelines to keep in mind:
- Go to sleep earlier and cut off the caffeine earlier
- Don’t eat after 7:00 PM. (With intermittent fasting, I only eat between 12 noon and 5:00 PM).
- If possible, get outside to enjoy the natural morning light.
We can often beat the heat when we get outside to exercise in the early. morning.
We are more alert in the morning. Cortisol in our bodies reaches its peak at 8:00 AM.
When we exercise early, we have more energy then and for the rest of our day.
Early exercise gives us better focus for the remainder of the day.
There are fewer distractions in the morning and we can concentrate better on what we are doing.
It is important to hydrate before, during and after a workout. A good plan is to consume a number of ounces of water to equal half of our weight in pounds each day. At 185 pounds, I need at least 92.5 ounces of water per day. We need to start drinking water as soon as we wake up.
Motivation and accountability seem to me to be mutually inclusive. We must establish a routine to be successful in our fitness journey.
Next, we must consistently stick to this routine. Occasionally missing a day or otherwise deviating from the routine is not important. It is important to get back on track as soon as possible.
We need some form of record keeping, a diary of our progress. This inspires us to keep going and also lets us know how we are doing. We then have a strong incentive to post good numbers, distances, times, weights or lengths – measurements of our daily progress.
Amazon has some good journals to consider. As an Amazon affiliate, I may be rewarded by activity on my links, such as the one below. Amazon is known for its good service and huge selections.
It is also important to get instant feedback as we are exercising. We may want to consider a means to track our heart rate, steps, distance, calories burned and active minutes. See below.
Those who are new to workouts would do well to keep it simple.
Do 10 push-ups, 10 free squats and a one minute plank. Then go outside for a 20-minute brisk walk. Do this 3 times in your first week. Do this in the morning, if at all possible.
In the second week, do two sets of the push-ups, squats and planks 3 times in the week. On alternate days, do a 30-minute brisk walk. In the morning.
You will most likely consider this to be productive, but quite easy. Make changes as you see fit.
Very soon, you will want to expand your workouts. Here are two excellent tools to give you a full body workout, with unlimited exercise movements:
Resistance bands with handles – for simple but effective workouts. Very reasonable prices.
Bullworker fitness equipment – for more sophisticated exercise, both isotonic and isometric. The Steel Bow is shown below.
Motivation is essential to successful workout routines and to any other disciplined venture we may embark upon.
Mornings are the best times to begin an exercise routine. Simplicity is the key to a beginning workout program.
Accountability is necessary for continued progress and record keeping makes this possible.
Sometimes it may be difficult to get out of bed to work out. Do it. You will be happy you did. You will be gratified by your choice to apply some discipline and you will have fun in the process.
Please leave me any comments or questions in the “Comments” section below Or email me, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Let’s enjoy the beauty of Autumn!