If you’ve been struggling with overcoming daily obstacles to getting your workout in then you are most certainly not alone. The sedentary rut is a very real thing and getting out of it can often seem impossible, despite our best intentions! You may even berate yourself with all of the great reasons to keep exercising. However, improving your energy levels, overall mood, quality of sleep and even boosting your immunity may not be enough to get that follow-through going. Even having a vast array of workouts available at the click of a button can fall short of motivating you.
After all, if knowing how and why to exercise was enough, we’d all be in shape! But forming a life-long habit often takes a mix of the right mindset, support and a fairly smart approach to time management. While practical concerns like a busy schedule or even poor health can make exercise more challenging, for most of us, the biggest barriers are often mental. Here are some top tips on how to get in your daily workout, even when you have limited time!
Consider Getting Up An Hour Earlier
This isn’t always possible, especially if you already wake up at the crack of dawn for children or for a job that requires an early jump on the day. However, if you do have the luxury of buying an extra hour in the morning, you’ll find that getting into the habit of taking care of your workout first thing will eradicate any procrastinating over the matter later in the day.
Schedule Workouts Like You Schedule Your Meetings
Sometimes, simply adding your workout schedule to your calendar, and block-booking that time with a reminder alert, is a great way to keep consistent. This means that you won’t mistakenly book other accountabilities into the time that you’ve decided is going to be dedicated to getting you moving.
Invest in Home or Office Cardio Equipment
It’s really not as expensive or complicated as it sounds! If you’re able to invest in a key piece of cardio training equipment, you’ll find that not having to commute to the gym and back (or hit the road for a run or walk) makes things a lot easier on a busy schedule. What kind of equipment? Well, that depends entirely on your cardio fitness goals and budget. If you’re able to invest in a treadmill, stationary bicycle or even a stepper or rowing machine, squeezing in cardio becomes so much easier. For more tips on how to benefit from these machines, read all about our top tips for getting the most out of your cardio.
Invest in Home or Office Strength-Training Equipment
Of course, not everyone is able to demarcate the space in their homes or offices for large cardio machines. This is when strength training with a compact set of weights can become particularly beneficial for getting a workout in. Whether you’re trying to bulk up on muscle or simply do a HIIT session with some added intensity for weight-loss, this type of exercise equipment is affordable, compact and can be applied to many different types of workouts.
Introduce Variety to Your Workouts
Boredom is the ultimate, slow death to any workout regime, it’s really important that you try to stay engaged with your body and the exercises. This is why many experts recommend that you work out differently each day. Create a schedule for your workouts that mixes different cardio and strength training activities.
Remember to Plan Active Rest Days Too
Working out full-on every single day isn’t always the healthiest way to tackle your fitness. It’s important to also give your muscles recovery days. When it comes to keeping your daily habit, this means choosing low-intensity activities every few days. For example, having a deep-stretch yoga session once a week can promote fitness while also giving your muscles some downtime to repair for your next intense session.
Make it a Date And Workout With Someone
Some people find that scheduling a daily workout with a friend or loved one can go a long way to keeping it consistent. This is because you’re no longer just accountable to yourself. Having someone else to show up for can prove far more motivating and the social aspect takes a lot of the sting out of the process.
Prioritise Getting Enough Sleep
Even though most people have eight-hour jobs during the day or night (if not longer), it is crucial to still get enough sleep if you want to recharge your body's batteries enough to workout. Six to eight hours of sleep will keep you going strong throughout the day and that is the first step to feeling motivated enough to get moving.
Change the Narrative & Your Mindset
Last, but certainly not least, it’s important to monitor the way you think about exercise and particularly the internal dialogue you may be having with yourself. Don’t tell yourself that working out today is something you “have” to do – instead, think of it as something you “want” to do. The feeling of accomplishment each time will start to become addictive and, finally, you will find that it does become something you simply can’t live without.
At the end of the day, an important key to being in shape is to set goals and keep a positive mindset and to remember to enjoy yourself. If you stay positive, you will be able to push yourself to form this life changing habit in no time at all. Good luck!