The hardest thing about exercise is to start doing it. Once you have made exercise a sustainable habit and you are exercising regularly, you will find that the hardest thing will be to stop.
Exercise is an important health habit that you all need. The physical health benefits speak for themselves, but the lesser known positive influences on your social life and your career make it even more worth while to get out there and start exercising regularly.
Having positive habits that are beneficial to one’s physical or mental health, is often linked to a high level of discipline and self-control.
Examples of good habits include just this, regular exercise as well as a variety of other habits that can be linked to the habit of exercise like consuming less alcohol, smoking less or not at all, having a balanced diet and avoiding sleep deprivation.
Making exercise a habit
Building the habit of exercise on The Life Habits FREEDOM principles will insure that you break your bad habits and build great new ones.
Top five exercise habits
Strength in numbers
Workout partners can help you stay committed to fitness and have fun. If there were a way to double your chances for fitness success, would you be interested? How about a technique to make exercise more fun? A tool that automatically creates space and time in your busy schedule for workouts? A proven way to help you out of a rut or through a plateau?
It may all sound too good to be true, but countless fitness seekers have found that the right workout buddy can do all that and more. Exercise partners provide a powerful combination of support, accountability, motivation and, in some cases, healthy competition.
A buddy can motivate you to do one more set, continue when you feel like you have just had enough and want to give up, or when you are feeling hopeless.
We are social animals. We seek the company and positive reinforcement of others, especially when we are doing work.
Ready to partner up? Great! But before you recruit the first warm body you see, keep in mind that not all workout buddies are created equal. If you choose someone who does not share a similar commitment to fitness, that can be a distraction or even a deterrent. And if your partner is at a radically different level of health, fitness or ability, you could be held back, pushed too hard or even injured.
Your workout pal doesn’t have to be your best friend, but he or she has to be someone you like and whom you wouldn’t want to disappoint, psychologically, if you feel like you have a responsibility and commitment toward another person, you are more likely to follow through on that commitment.
Healthy eating and drinking
Healthy eating and drinking helps to improve your sleep and your overall health.
Have healthy foods readily available at home and at work. People who are sleepy are more likely to reach for unhealthy foods.
Stock your kitchen with easy-to-eat raw vegetables (baby carrots, apple slices) and hummus, fruits (bananas, oranges), or a container of raw almonds and raisins, so that when you’re tired but hungry, you make healthy food choices.
Prepare meals before your shift, so they’re ready to eat when you get home. Experiment with crock pot meals (which can cook foods over a long period of time) or try freezing portion sizes of your favorite healthy meals for easy access when you don’t have time to cook.
Bring your own food to work. You’re more likely to eat healthily if you pack your own meals rather than eating foods from restaurants, take out counters or vending machines.
Sit down to eat. Pause for meals. Eat at a relaxed pace. Eating on the go or in front of a computer encourages mindless snacking.
Moderate your caffeine consumption. Limit caffeine intake four to five hours before the end of your shift to help your body wind down for home and relaxation.
Drink plenty of fluids. Your body often signals hunger and thirst in the same way. Bring a water bottle to work and fill it often. Not only will you save money on bottled drinks, but you’ll treat your body as well. Infuse your water with fruit or a citrus slice for an added flavor boost without the calories.
Why should I get up so early to exercise?!
You can accomplish absolutely nothing else the rest of the day and still feel 'accomplished.' Because you already ran, like, three miles. Isn't that enough?!
You will actually want to eat healthy stuff afterward. You started the day on such a good foot that the salad bar at the cafeteria might start to seem appealing
You will eventually get a better workout than you would later in the day. Technically, your body is wired to perform at its peak in mid-afternoon. But things like, oh, work can get in the way of workouts at that time. When you make exercise a regular part of your morning routine, though you will be less likely to skip it for other obligations.
Once you get used to moving first thing in the morning, studies suggest that the body adjusts and might even surpass its afternoon performance peak.
You will feel less stressed when you get to work. And feel better about working late. People who exercise regularly report feeling more empowered and all around better about their work-life balance.
You will start your day in an awesome mood. Even if you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, a morning workout will boost your endorphins for extra smiles the rest of the day.
Setting and achieving goals is one of the best surefire ways to improve the quality of your lives. You commonly use goals to improve your health, relationships, financial situation, career or business success, and even happiness. Sometimes goals are set for you, as in a work situation, but most of the time you determine your own goals.
Successfully achieving those goals is not only key in creating your exercise habits, but also to help you to grow as individuals. Unfortunately, when choosing your exercise goals, you often unknowingly sabotage your success, by committing these three very common goal setting mistakes.
Thinking too narrowly
Quantity vs quality
Set goals that impact the bigger picture and address your true objectives. Don’t get caught in the trap of thinking too narrowly and concentrate on quality over quantity. Make sure your goals are realistic, within your control and have a reasonable time frame. While you’re at it, take a look at past goals that you weren’t able to achieve, see if you can revise them, and try again. Here you will find some more useful guidelines to setting effective goals.
Variety in training
Not only are you at risk of finding your exercise routing boring, you may find yourself wanting to stop.
From a scientific point of view, if you work out regularly, it's easy to fall into the habit of doing the same set of exercises all the time. Unfortunately, research has shown that when your body performs the same exercises repeatedly, your muscles adjust over time to make those exercises easier. While this might make your workout feel more comfortable, this comfort comes at cost. Eventually, your workouts won't offer your body as much of a challenge.
My advice, diversify, let's face it, if it is boring you won't keep at it. Have fun and change the routine often.
Get inspired to exercise by reading up on these unexpected ways that working out can benefit mental health, relationships, and lead to a healthier lifestyle and happier life overall.