At the start of every new month or season, many turn to get back into their exercise routine but aren’t sure wherever to start. But as most of us know to be real, getting back into an exercise routine can be tough! If it weren’t challenging, everyone would be doing it. It takes more than investing in a gym membership, buying new workout shoes and packing your gym bag. The real challenge comes with the mental side of the game – your motivation.
Stay On-track with Motivation
Disclaimer: Prior to starting any exercise program, please consult with your healthcare provider.
First, let’s begin by focusing your efforts and channeling your mental energy into a mode of reflection. Ask yourself a few questions and write down your answers on a piece of paper so you can appreciate everyday them later. Here are some examples:
- What inspires me?
- Why will i want to experience the results of exercise?
- What is my current relationship with exercise?
- Where shall we be held currently at in relation to my goals?
- Why are my goals and my journey vital that you me?
Truly thinking about WHY you are exercising and striving toward improved fitness might help! If your answer is something as simple as, “because my friends are doing it,” your motivation will likely diminish sooner or later. It’s not about current diet or fitness trends, but regarding your overall health and well-being. Get down to the root of your motivation when you start considering your goals and you will be more likely to accomplish them.
You are a Priority
Why is it so easy to lose focus? There isn't any urgency to complete your goals if you know that you have an endless amount of time to accomplish them. Let me ask you this… in case your boss tells you about a project that is due a year from now, are you going to start working on it right away? Probably, your answer is no! If your answer is yes, you might start working in it, but one or two weeks down the road another project will arise and also the original project will get put on the back burner.
Sadly, health gets put on the back burner for many Americans because we quite often set lofty goals and give ourselves an endless amount of time to complete them. It is totally normal for your priorities to shift every now and then, but when this happens, go back to the original above-mentioned questions and re-evaluate your goals.
What Makes a Good Goal?
You may be wondering what makes a goal “good” to have. To answer your question, each of your goals should contain the following five components: (S) Specific, (M) Measurable, (A) Attainable, (R) Realistic and (T) Timely. Set realistic monthly or weekly goals you know you are capable of accomplishing with effort and commitment. Here are some examples:
- “I will establish a routine by taking three fitness classes a week during my first month at the gym.”
- “I am going to lose five pounds this month by exercising four hours a week and increasing fiber.”
What’s my advice? Create SMART goals and continue to make yourself a priority! You deserve it. Keep in mind that reaching your goals does not translate into reaching the end of your weight management journey. Our goals evolve as we evolve!
About the Author:
Jillian McAfee is a Fitness expert and General Manager for Downsize Fitness in Illinois. Jillian also coaches individuals across the nation in an online program called [email protected], powered through Helpouts by Google. She received her Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from Indiana University and is a Certified Personal Trainer through The American College of Sports Medicine. She's played a large role in lots of individuals’ weight-loss journeys and hopes to do the same for many years to come.