Whether you choose to work to be fit and stay that way, or struggle to exercise, its hard. Both choices are hard, so choose the one that will ultimately lead to happiness. Succeeding comes from this type of fitness motivation in action.
Running for thirty minutes is hard. Struggling to get out of bed and feeling bad about yourself because you’ve gained weight is hard. Learning something new is hard, but so is drowning in a lack of knowledge. It is difficult to create a fitness habit, just as it’s difficult to constantly avoid the person in the mirror. Choose your hard.
There’s no better fitness motivation than making the choice to succeed. Life is going to be challenging no matter what, so the obvious thing to do is pick the hard thing that leads to something we want. This begs an obvious question. Why do so many of us see one hard thing, avoiding exercise, as easier than another? We all know the end result of avoidance, yet we choose it anyways. Most of us also know how exercise feels, which isn’t very tempting. But the results over time are what truly matter. This is our real choice.
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I exercise in some form or another every single day, with few exceptions. Like all people, my body requires some rest, so I stretch or do light yoga or go for a walk on those days. But I always make sure I’m moving, because the alternative leads to atrophy and an early death. Forming a habit like mine is certainly challenging, but its easy enough to begin. People always ask me how I stick with it and what my secrets are. Since exercise is all about action, below are three fitness motivation steps that I guarantee will make choosing your hard an easy decision.
Fitness Motivation in Action
1. Pick Three Fun Activities
Exercising is hard enough, so please do something you inherently enjoy. It takes 7 to 10 days to form a habit, which is why committing to a 30 day fitness challenge is so amazing for your long term workout goals. After exercising for a week straight, it will feel like part of your daily routine. But you still need to choose a fitness challenge that includes exercises you enjoy. There’s nothing worse than dreading the actual activity that you’ve chosen for your fitness.
In order to choose fitness over flab, ask yourself what will keep you coming back for more. I love running because it gets me outside in the fresh air, exploring the area where I live. The city is quiet when I run and I often see the sunrise. This makes running fun, plus the actual activity feels great afterwards. I hated running for sports when I was younger because it was punishment, but now its something I celebrate. Choose things you enjoy or at least tolerate. I also enjoy jumping jacks and plank, so I choose fitness challenges with those two exercises quite often.
2. Choose How To Rest
Rest and recovery are integral to building strength and improving your physical fitness. Burn out is not unique to any one activity. It will happen no matter what if you don’t slow down or rest, especially with exercise. This means deciding how and when you will cease activity. I recommend picking one day for a long walk. That day is Sunday for me and while I consider it a rest day, I’m actually getting a nice workout from my one hour walk.
One or two days a week I also stretch and do some light yoga. My body carries tension easily and I’m sure you are carrying a ton, even if you don’t realize it. Spend ten to fifteen minutes opening your hips, your shoulders, and your back. Loosen up or simply sit in child’s pose and release yourself. This type of rest day will make your next workout day that much more enjoyable and approachable. Two days on, one day off is an excellent habit to create.
3. Partner Up
Sports are great because you make friends with your teammates and competition, if you weren’t friends in advance. Playing with your friends adds motivation, incentive, accountability and fun! The same thing applies to daily exercise. Who in your life will join you for a run, a walk, or fifteen minutes of stretching? What do you enjoy and who will also find it fun?
The questions are simple, but the answers may take time to develop. Trial and error may be necessary before you find those few exercises that are truly fun and allow you to build a winning habit. Fitness motivation doesn’t come overnight, so take extra rest days in the beginning if need be. But remember the rule of “two days on, one day off” and strive to get back there. Finding that special partner may also take trial and error, or a list of five partners for five different activities. Be true to yourself and choose the hard things you enjoy enough to act upon. That is where success lives!
Meet your Writer:
Dan Salem is Lead Editor, Staff Writer, and Featured Host at BuzzChomp. He’s a Staff Writer for NFL Spinzone, as well as an Actor, Writer, Director and Producer. Get lost in his Youtube comedy channel PillowTalk TV. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
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