We hear it all the time: regular exercise is beneficial to everyone. But working out is easier said than done. There are several reasons why someone isn’t active on a regular basis. From busy schedules, having low energy after work, or not wanting to pay high prices for equipment or memberships, there could be serious barriers between you and exercise. If you haven’t been able to enjoy exercise in the past, it only means that you haven’t found the right way to exercise for you. Making simple changes or restarting your fitness routine can make working out something to look forward to while getting healthier in the process. Here are six habits to practice to teach yourself how to enjoy exercise:
- Start simple workouts
- Work out with other people
- Listen to music
- Exercise in unique ways
- Change your perspective and goals
- Reward your progress
Start simple workouts
Looking around at the gym or on social media can start to make you think only complicated workouts can be effective. But the truth is that starting small and simple is more productive and enjoyable for exercising consistently. Don’t pressure yourself into daily hour-long workouts if they cannot fit into your schedule. When time interferes with scheduling consistent workouts, the solution is to find smaller times of the day to stay active. For example, walking at work or before starting the day burns calories while improving your mood and energy levels.
Working out from home is the perfect solution for those who want to stay away from gyms or enjoy exercise indoors. It doesn’t require expensive equipment when you can use your body as resistance. You can also use inexpensive workout tools like weights or resistance bands. The objective is to pace your progress by starting with low-intensity workouts in short bursts that aren’t a challenge to complete. The more you exercise, the more comfortable you are in your athletic ability to overcome any physical or mental limitations.
Work out with other people
Inviting a friend or partner to a gym or class is a well-known way to enjoy exercise. Having a friend with you can be practical when getting to know unfamiliar equipment or how to exercise for your needs. Dian Griesel says that group workouts promote positive peer pressure to motivate others to exercise consistently. But those aren’t the only benefits of group exercise! Groups that exercise with a shared goal like losing weight promote encouragement to keep members accountable for reaching their fitness goals. Also, being social as you exercise is more fun than sweating it out in the gym or outdoors alone. To take the next step in improving your workouts, consulting a personal trainer can increase confidence and the overall quality of your exercise.
Listen to music
Learning to enjoy exercise is about doing what you already love, and one way to incorporate your interests into exercise is listening to music. Internal distractions can play a factor in having difficulty exercising, especially in public. But music is known for producing strong emotional responses, including excitement and happiness. According to research by Dr. Marcelo Bigliassi, listening to music while walking was 13% more enjoyable than a podcast and 28% more enjoyable than no auditory stimuli. Creating your own playlist or listening to one on Spotify can improve your endurance and get you motivated to stay in the gym longer.
Exercise in unique ways
One reason some people can’t enjoy exercise is that routines can be too repetitive or not engaging enough. But there are more ways to exercise than reps at the gym or taking neighborhood runs. You can start exercising by playing team sports, dancing, or water aerobics and swimming. Another option is to work out through daily tasks like cleaning or yard work that get you on your feet. Charities and non-profit organizations often host events like races and similar events that motivate people to exercise for awareness or donations to a better cause. Nowadays, anyone is able to use the Internet for participating in live workout classes and events or watching YouTube tutorials and exercise routines.
Change your perspective and goals
Having the right attitude and setting attainable goals can change the way someone exercises. Working out doesn’t need to be anything more than taking care and showing love to your body. This is a valuable time to meet your needs and even overcome your fears! Take time to be mindful of the positive changes from exercising and the thrills of being active again. Don’t let focusing on short-term benefits or numbers take away from results like higher self-esteem and a better mood. Everyone’s fitness journey is different, so making adjustments and trying new things are inevitable. Flexible mindsets with a positive attitude bring purpose to your exercise routine like nothing else will!
Reward your progress
There’s nothing like rewarding yourself after a long day of work. To keep a consistent habit of exercising, setting milestones with rewards will motivate you to enjoy exercise. Keep track of your process with a workout app with personalized goals, workout plans, and even nutrition information! Once you have met your meaningful and measurable fitness goals, a healthy treat is well deserved. Share your hard work with workout partners or on social media or buy a healthy drink on the way home from the gym. Looking forward to these rewards every week or month can only strengthen your newfound enjoyment for exercise.
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