Tips for Starting (and Sticking to!) a Fitness Routine

Sunday night: I’m going to the gym at 5am tomorrow!

Monday morning: (Alarm goes off) Ugh, too tired. I’ll squeeze a workout in around lunch.

Monday afternoon: Ahh, I’m too busy, I can’t stop for a workout! I’ll go after work.

Monday evening: I’m hungry AND exhausted. The LAST thing I feel like is heading to the gym.

If any (or all) of these excuses sound familiar… rest assured, you are not alone.

We’ve all been there. From those trying to find a fitness routine, to the exercise enthusiasts. We have ALL experienced a day where we could find 1,001 LEGIT reasons why the gym can wait til tomorrow.

EXCEPT, odds are… the majority of those reasons will still be there tomorrow.

Tired, chaotic home life, busy work life, kids in tons of after-school activities are all variables that will plague our lifestyles as far as we can see.

Let’s be honest with ourselves:

There’s never a NON-chaotic time in life.

There’s never a NON-stressful period.

There’s never a time when something unpredictable/unplanned doesn’t pop up and threaten to derail our perfectly structured routine.

POINT: Creating a goal or starting a routine isn’t about waiting until life slows down and ALLOWS you time to focus on you.

You merely have to CREATE IT.  

Think of it from this perspective: Having kids. Buying a home. New career path. Or some other major life change.

Most big milestones that leave your mind wondering “How am I going to do this?” while your heart says “We’ll figure it out.”

And somehow, you DO…

The same concept applies to anything else in life that you truly want to accomplish in life… even fitness goals!

So, if you’ve reached the point in your life where you’re ready to find a routine you can stick with, our advice is to remove as many barriers that have derailed you in the past.

Here are our top 5 tips for starting (and sticking to!) a fitness routine:

  1. Determine what will work best for your schedule.
    What do your DAYS look like? Are they jam-packed with kids, work, etc? Do you work thru lunch every day? If this is the case, a mid-day workout is probably not your best bet. What are your evenings like? Is it realistic to hit up the gym on your way home from work? If not, do you feel motivated enough to head to the gym in the late evening? Are you willing to skip the late night TV and head to bed earlier to make an early morning gym session work? These are questions that don't have a right or wrong answer. Only YOU can determine which works best for your schedule.

    Now, once you’ve determined which will work best…. plug that time in your calendar just as you would any other important meeting that can’t be missed.

  2. Have your gym outfit planned or packed.
    If you’re committed to an early morning workout, lay out your outfit the night prior. Anything you can do to make getting up and out the door easier, DO!
    If you plan to shower and head straight to work, don’t forget towels, soap, your work clothes (don’t forget a bra!), and your lunch. Yes, it’s a lot of packing but if you know that going home first to change will yield a higher likelihood of talking yourself out of going…. the extra planning and preparation will pay off.
    If you’re planning for a lunchtime or after work gym sash, pack your back and have it in the car the night before.

  3. Have a plan.
    Workouts don’t need to be long to be effective. If you’re pressed for time, make your time there count! Plan in advance what you’ll do. Will you take a fitness class? Do you plan to do cardio? What machine and how long? Will you weight train? If so, what body part? Map out your exercises beforehand and keep on the note section of your phone. PS - Don't forget to build a few minutes in for stretching! If you need help creating a plan that works for your lifestyle and your goals, a SiS trainer would be happy to help!

  4. Accountability.
    Find someone to hold you accountable of your new goal. Whether it’s a workout partner, a trainer or just someone who will ask “How was your workout?!” and you don't want to disappoint by saying “I didn’t go”…. accountability goes a long way. Don’t be afraid to find someone who will encourage your new goal, celebrate your accomplishments, and check on your progress.

  5. Be realistic.
    The last thing you want to happen is burnout or an injury from doing too much too soon, and not letting your body (and mind) get ample recover. Even the most seasoned athletes need rest and recovery days. If you’re currently working out 0 days a week, don’t set a goal for 7 days a week or 2-hour workouts. Set a goal for 3 or 4 days a week, 30 minutes each time. See how that leaves you feeling and how that worked with your schedule. Remain with a consistent schedule for a few weeks before adding more days or time to your routine.

    On the flip side: if life truly does get in the way and you miss a day - or even a week - from your newly established fitness routine… grant yourself forgiveness. Do what you can with the time and resources you do have, and take pride in knowing that you’re giving your best effort.

    Now that you’ve read this … What’s YOUR plan for Monday???

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Do you wish you had someone to REALLY support you FULLY to reach your goals through:

  • EXERCISE (specific to your unique life!), 

  • NUTRITION (specific for your unique body and goals!)

  • Accountability and mindset coaching

  • An approach that takes your long term health and lifestyle into account

  • Peer support from other like-minded women?

Through the unique sisterhood of our Sisters in Shape online client/coach community, women are changing. We know that our affordable, balanced and fully CUSTOMIZED approach to helping you crush your goals is what you've been looking for.

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