Now that the Summer is in the full swing many of us are in a big hurry to get in shape. For someone who’s never worked out consistently the idea of finally starting working out could be as overwhelming as it is exciting. I think all of us have been in a situation when you say: “Next Monday for sure!”, and then Monday rolls around and you are not feeling it and then you miss it and it feels like you already failed. Trust me, I’ve been there.
About 3 months ago I decided that enough is enough and it’s time for a change. I have started working out and going strong to this day, consistently working out 3 times a week.
Below I share a few tips that really helped me to start working out and to stick with it.
1. Find a good program or trainer. If you haven’t been consistently working out before, changes are you don’t really know what to do and where to start. Showing up at the gym without any workout plan or system most likely will not bring you the results you want. Find a good program that suits you and helps to establish the basis, it could be a group class, a workout video, an app or even a personal trainer.
2. Start on Tuesday. Getting back into the work mode after the weekend is a challenge of its own, so let the Monday go and start on Tuesday instead. There is still enough time in the week left to get enough work outs and you don’t have to take on everything the week brings at once. Besides, Mondays are usually super crowded at the gym so you might have to wait for the machine and also have too many people witnessing you get out of breath not even half way through your first mile.
3. Set realistic goals. Once you finally started, it is natural to want to take it to the max. The problem is that doing 100% more than you’ve ever done could leave you burnt out faster than it will take your muscles to recover from that first workout. By thinking you can go from zero workouts a week to daily you are setting yourself up for failure. Be realistic about how much you can really take on and add on more later on if you want to.
4. Plan your workout routine around the schedule you already have. If you’re not a morning person but suddenly you decide you are going to wake up 5:30 AM every day to run, most likely by day 3 you will want to sleep in. Find the best time in your existing schedule where you can fit in a workout and make sure to have an alternative time to make your weekly goal so you don’t feel like you’ve failed if you missed one.
5. Be patient. Of course, you want to see the results right away but it doesn’t always happen so quick. Many programs out there have a timeline, 8-10-12-20 weeks till you see the results which may seem like a really long time. But the truth is that time will pass either way, whether you work out or not, but if you stick with your workout routine the results will inevitably come.
6. Get a workout buddy. This is a popular advice but it really does help. It’s really fun to sweat together and push each other to work harder. Workout partner also keeps you motivated when you need extra push.
You can read about my personal workout story that incorporates all of the above in my next post.