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How to get into an exercise habit

Ask an exercise expert how you can find the motivation to exercise every day, and they’ll tell you you’re doing it wrong! After all, like most things we do regularly, exercise is a habit. Do it enough times and it will become second nature. Wait for motivation to strike and you might never get off the couch!
So how can we get into an effortless exercise habit? Consider these top tips:

1. Do a mix of activities

It’s true what they say – variety is the spice of life. And if you want to really enjoy exercise, rather than viewing it as a chore, mix it up.
Try a wide range of physical activity and find something you love. Check out daily deal sites for discounts of free passes to classes and activities in your area. You could do Pilates today, swimming tomorrow, belly dancing the day after that…the trick is to do activities that don’t feel like exercise.

2. Get a fitness buddy

Teaming up with a friend or family member is an easy way to keep on track with your physical fitness. You can motivate and encourage each other, hold each other accountable, and make it hard to cancel simply because you don’t feel like exercising. And when you’ve committed to a certain number of days, weeks, or months exercising together – why not treat yourselves to a fun and relaxing activity?

3. Start small

If you’re just starting out, packing your schedule with activities might have the opposite effect and overwhelm rather than encourage. So, start small. Pick a little activity you can do today to get you closer to your exercise goals. Putting on your exercise clothes is one step. Or walking to the shops is another. Just a small thing that will get the exercise ball rolling.

4. Schedule it

Like many things in our day, exercise doesn’t usually just happen. We have to plan for it, and schedule it in among our other responsibilities. Add activities to your weekly calendar, and build it up so that eventually you are making movement a part of your daily routine.

5. Adopt a new attitude

Gone are the days when slogging it out at the gym was the only thing that counted as exercise. Now, we know that incidental exercise can be just as beneficial. That means playing with the kids, walking the dog, and moving house, for example, can keep us trim and healthy. So shift your attitude from seeing exercise as a chore – and see it as something that happens when you’re out living your life.

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