Five Tips to Keep Your Workout on Track

We’ve all been there with the repertoire of excuses: It’s been a long day, I’m tired, I’m sore, there’s a good television show on, I have something else I’d rather be doing…

So, I’m not going to work out today.

Wrong answer. Here are my tried and true tips that will help keep you on track to completing your workout and make your whole day seem more successful.

1. Schedule a time and stick to it
Ever notice how when you write something down in your planner or calendar you always get it done? Dentist appointment at 9, check! Meeting with the girls for lunch, check! Why can’t your workout be the same? I’ve found that physically writing in a time for me to do my workout actually makes me accomplish it. Make sure you pick a time that works for you too – just because I like to get up at 6 a.m. to get it done with, doesn’t mean everyone does. So schedule it reasonably where you won’t feel rushed or drowsy and can actually try to enjoy it.

2. Do something you enjoy
If the thought of running for half an hour on a treadmill isn’t appealing to you, chances are you’re not going to be fired up to get to the gym. Why do something you don’t like when there are plenty of other options? Try looking around to see if there are any fun group workouts you can join – like yoga or a dance class – or an intramural sports league or cycling class. You want to look forward to your workout, so make it something fun.

3. Plan your workout
Don’t just say “I’m going to exercise for an hour” and expect to accomplish that much. Before you head to the gym, track or even a blank spot of floor, plan out what you’re going to do. If you know ahead of time that you’re going to do 20 minutes of treadmilling, 20 minutes on the elliptical and 20 minutes of weight training followed by a 10 minute cool down you’re more likely to stick out the whole workout and feel like you’re using your time wisely.

4. Ask yourself why you’re working out
Short-term and long-term goals help to motivate us and keep us on track. By asking yourself why you’re going to work out you’re reminding yourself of what you want to accomplish in the first place, be it to lose weight, become healthier, train for a marathon or just to stay healthy. Set realistic goals so you can see the results and then keep on going.

5. Give yourself a break
Don’t kill yourself by forcing yourself to work out every day. You’ll burn out eventually if you’re doing similar things over and over again. Schedule a day or two a week where you say you won’t do any workouts today, or you’ll tone down your workout. You’ll feel more refreshed when you do start your next workout and look forward to it more.

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