We’ve all had times in our lives when we're motivated to go to the gym and exercise because we want to lose weight, get strong, etc. You go 3-4 times a week for the next month or two, but then you start to lose motivation. It gets harder to get out of bed in the mornings to go to the gym, or you’re ‘too tired’ to go after work in the evenings. So you stop going to the gym altogether but your membership is still there and you’re paying for it weekly.
Sound familiar? I’ve been there and it happens more often than you think.
Here are 5 tips to help you stay consistent with exercise.
I’m an organised person and I thrive on routine. If something’s in my diary, I’ll do it. If it’s not, it’ll most likely go to the bottom of my list - out of sight, out of mind.
Create a routine for yourself by blocking out the same time and day each week to exercise, whether it’s after you wake up and have a coffee, or whether it’s after work on the way home. A study shows that, on average, it takes more than 2 months before a new behaviour becomes automatic — 66 days to be exact. So if you can keep this up for 66 days, it’ll become second nature to you.
Too often people do a particular type of workout because they’ve seen an Instagram influencer do it, or because their friends do it. When in reality, they don’t enjoy it at all.
I’m not a cardio person, and all my friends can tell you that - you can probably even tell from my page! I prefer lifting heavy weights over running on the treadmill; and by running, I mean a light jog.
Exercise should be enjoyable and fun, but also challenging. But if you find yourself dreading the treadmill but you’re doing it because you feel like you ‘have to’, then ditch the treadmill and do something else!
Following a structured training program means you’ll spend more time doing the actual training at the gym, and less time walking around aimlessly, figuring out what to do next, or scrolling through Instagram to find your next workout.
Following a training program also means:
What I mean by this is if you plan to go to the gym before work or after work, pick a gym that’s on the way that's easily accessible so you’re more likely to go. If you pick a gym that’s out of the way and you’re already struggling to stay consistent with your exercise, what’s the chance you’d rather go straight home, have some dinner and put your feet up?
Another tip if you like to exercise in the morning, is to put your gym clothes out before you go to bed so it’s right there when you wake up and a good reminder to go.
I have a client who started training with me and told me she only had time to exercise for 5-10 minutes a day, which was fine by me. If I could get her moving her body for 5-10 every day, that would be better than no exercise at all.
Over time, she started spending more time doing workouts and doing them more frequently throughout the week. She does 40 minutes of exercise 5 days a week, and nothing about her schedule changed - she just did a 5-minute action each day by exercising and moving her body, so she built up momentum over time, and then she started to prioritise exercise and enjoys it a lot more now.
So lose the ‘all or nothing’ mentality because some movement is better than no movement.