Stick with Your Workout and Have Fun
I have to say I am proud of myself. I made exercise a priority in all of 2011, not just the first two months. I’ve read a bunch of articles on how to keep it fun, from trying dance classes to using the latest heart rate monitors. Some of the new stuff works, but ultimately it’s just about moving your body. My number one piece of advice is to carve out time for exercise. That’s really the only way to make it work. I am lucky that my job is flexible. I scheduled time on Tuesday and Friday mornings after I drop my kids off at school for working out. I actually had the hardest time sticking to my workouts in the summer when my kids were home. I tried incorporating family bike trips to make up for my missed workouts, which I also did this past Winter Break.
My next piece of advice it to view this carved workout time as much deserved “me time.” I usually go on long walks with my MP3 player. That is my favorite gadget–no heart rate monitor needed. My sister is a treadmill girl, and her number one workout accessory is a new book. She has not moved over to an eBook yet, but I think it’s coming soon.
In the days when I had a gym membership, I loved watching TV while on the treadmill. If you are like many busy people it is hard to find time to sit and watch TV, so think of gym time as TV time as well. If the gym doesn’t have what you want on TV take your iPad and watch whatever you want! Yes, I like mixing my entertainment with my workout. It’s the way to go for us non-sporty types.
They always say to workout with friends. It is much more fun, but often not realistic. How does one coordinate what little free time is available with another person? I’ve been lucky here as well, because one of my best friends has a flexible schedule. Once a week we try to include each other in our workouts. These are the best long walks. The week’s activities, wins and losses, get discussed in detail with a close friend. Not only am I getting exercise, I am getting much needed friend time. Instead of going to dinner with your friends go do an activity together. Go to dance lessons with your BFF, because no one wants to go by themselves. The cautionary note is to not count on your friends to be available to workout. Try to include them, but always expect to be on your own. Don’t allow yourself to flake out when your friend can’t make it.
I have also been jumping on my children’s trampoline on two of my non-workout days. I get my heart rate up for about 6 or 7 minutes, then I do some stretching and few yoga poses, for a nice little 10-15 min mini workout. It’s amazing how much better I feel! If you are at work, walk up and down the stairs for the first half of your lunch break or take a brisk walk outside. You may even convince a co-worker to join you, and then you can have fun gossiping–I mean talking about the weather. If your kids have a Kinect or a Wii, use it! Trying to dance like Michael Jackson is loads of fun.
You can stick with your New Year’s Resolution. Include some form of movement as planned part of your day. Get out a pencil and paper and make a grid with your schedule. Now add “me time” for your workouts. You know what you like, make it fun for you!