Anyone else lacking motivation to exercise? This winter, I have spent way too much time sitting on my sofa, eating Tim Tams and forgoing exercise. However, I’ve managed to get my exercise mojo back.
Wear your fitness clothes
Dig out your fitness clothes and start wearing them. Even just the act of putting on fitness gear can motivate you to get moving. I know I’m more inclined to work out once I put on my gym gear. And if you don’t have any decent fitness wear, buy some. You can splash out on some expensive gear or just pick up some basics at Big W or Target. No excuses.
Schedule your exercise
Put exercise sessions on your calendar. I’ve set up regular sessions on my smartphone. Somehow, psychologically, because it’s in my calendar, I tend to commit to it and arrange the rest of my schedule around my exercise. And also set it for a time that suits your personal body rhythms. I have a friend who gets up and heads to the gym at 5am. It works for her as she can fit in her workout before her husband leaves for work so she doesn’t have to worry about looking after the kids. For me, that’s just way too early – I need my sleep. I try to schedule mid-morning on my days off or weekend afternoons.
Get a fitness tracker
I love my FitBit! It’s the perfect device to track my exercise each day and inspires me to keep moving. I frequently check how many steps and kilometres I’ve done in a day. I love the little buzz I get on my wrist to advise me when I’ve reached 10,000 steps. By tracking steps, I do find that I tend to take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator and walking a short distance instead of jumping in the car. It’s also a great way to track your sleep, calories and water intake.
Exercising with a friend or two is a great way to combine a workout and socialise. It’s also motivating as you’ll be less inclined to blow off an exercise session when you’ve arranged to meet your workout partner. And it’s good to have someone to commiserate with when your muscles ache and you can’t move the next day.
If you have to bribe yourself to exercise, go for it. (Full disclosure: This is what works for me to get me exercising. I know, it’s a bit pathetic but it works!) Use a rewards chart just like you do for kids. Decide on rewards and the number of exercise sessions to reach them and get collecting. I’ve set smaller rewards for each block of 10 workouts and a visit to a day spa once I hit a certain amount of exercise sessions.
Commit to an event or goal
Signing up for an event or setting an exercise goal is a surefire way of getting motivated. Whether it’s registering for the Lake Mac Running Festival or Fernleigh 15 or committing to completing 100 ParkRuns, just do it. But make sure that you let everyone know what you’re doing. That way, you have to train and follow through.
Try a new sport or activity
To get moving, shake it up and try something new. There are loads of options to get exercising including running, indoor rock climbing, swimming, kayaking, CrossFit, high impact intensity training (HIIT), hot yoga, Barre Attack and Zero Gravity classes.
Try a free fitness class online
Want to get in shape? Choose from a variety of online exercise routines on YouTube. There are a million to choose from.
Exercise with kids
It can be a challenge finding time to exercise with kids. One option is to choose a family-friendly exercise programs. There’s a few around town that offer fitness training for mums while babies and kids are being looked after by a nearby carer. (Training groups are great to get motivated. The camaraderie and energy of the group provide incentive to keep going even when you want to quit). There are also gyms that features creches so you can leave your kids while you work out.
Or you can incorporate babies and kids into your fitness routine. Go out for a long walk with your baby in a stroller. For an added challenge, tackle a hill. Popular routes for prams include the Bar Beach to Merewether route or if you prefer harbour views, walk from Nobbys Beach to Honeysuckle. If lake breezes are more to your liking, join all the other mums and bubs on the popular lake walk between Eleebana and Speers Point. For those with older kids, walk or run while they accompany you on bikes or strollers or kick a ball around a park. Here is a list of family-friendly runs or walks that you can train for together. You can also do exercise programs at home with your kids.
Hope this gets you moving!
In 2012, Reena founded Newy with Kids to share information about family-friendly Newcastle. Originally from Canada, she had no idea about what to do with her toddler and after searching unsuccessfully for a local family guide, decided to start her own. Since that time, both the toddler and Newy with Kids have grown keeping Reena busy. If you see her out and about, say hi.