Get Motivated to Move

physical activityPhysical activity and exercise routines are vital for people to reach their health and fitness goals. You are never too old or too unfit to benefit from exercise. On the contrary, studies show that the more frail and unfit you are, the more you will benefit from exercise.

If you want to add length and quality to your life, follow these six steps to build adequate physical activity into your life:

1. Set short- and long- term health and fitness goals
Think about what you want to achieve in both the short and long term. Whether you want to improve your stamina so that you can play a longer game of tennis, increase your muscle strength so that you can lift your grandchild, prevent back pain when you garden, or lift your arm to reach a high shelf in a cupboard, consider how being in better shape will benefit various aspects of your life. Come up with activities or exercises to make improvements in stages, always keeping ultimate goals in mind.

2. Schedule it in
Get into an exercise routine. Set aside the same time every day(or almost everyday) to dedicate to exercise. You may need to experiment to find the most suitable time – and the time you’re most likely to stick to. Many people prefer mornings. Spend some time every Sunday night putting together a plan for your physical activity and exercise regimen for the week ahead. Don’t worry if something gets in the way: Remember that a little exercise is better than none. If you slack off one day, don’t let it become a pattern.

3. Take baby steps
Think of small, easy-to-do activities or exercises to begin so that you don’t set yourself up for failure. Keep adding small progressions to increase your routine. Start low and go slow to reach your goal.

4. Make activities regular and enjoyable
Focus on physical activities that you enjoy. You are more likely to keep up a regular routine if you like what you are doing

5. Record it
Keep an exercise journal or log to track your progress and keep you motivated.

6. Get support
Seek the support of a friend or family member to help you stay motivated and on track. Find an exercise buddy to join you in maintaining your exercise routine. Many people find health coaches or fitness experts useful to help them stay on track and keep them accountable.

Follow these six steps to be on your way to a longer and better quality of life.

Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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