We're a couple months into the New Year; how are those lifestyle changes coming along? If exercise is one of your New Year's resolutions but you're struggling to keep it up, you're not alone! Here's some advice on how to overcome three major obstacles:
You're not losing weight. This is one of the biggest reasons we struggle to keep up exercising habits. We work so hard, hitting the gym religiously for months, and after "only losing five pounds" we throw in the towel. However, the reality is that we can't simply exercise ourselves thinner—our eating habits also need to change.
There are many reasons why we should continue to exercise, regardless of our weight. Find the benefits of exercising—other than weight control—that appeal most to you. Exercise can help you in many ways, including:
- Stress reduction
- Increased strength and endurance
- Increased concentration
- Improved emotional stability
- Meeting new friends
- Alleviating boredom
- Better balance
- Improved sleep quality
- Enhanced self-esteem
- Simply "feeling good"
- It's not fun. Are you doing what you feel like you should do for exercise, or are you doing what you like to do for exercise? Exercise trends change almost as quickly as food trends—one year it might be yoga and high intensity boot camps the next. If you enjoy the type of exercise that is currently trendy, that's great! But if you don't, just do what's enjoyable for you even if it's as simple as a daily walk.
- You didn't plan ahead. If exercise is important to you, then it has to be planned and considered part of your daily routine—just like brushing your teeth. Take out your calendar and consider your day/week/month. Get your family involved in the planning so they know what days and times you need to take a break to exercise. Plan for the unexpected, such as inclement weather. If walking is your go-to exercise but its below zero outside or a foot of snow falls, take your walk to the local shopping mall, bring up a walking video on the internet or break out the snowshoes!
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