Making daily exercise a habit is the best thing you can do for your health. Not only is it going to make your physical health better, but it will also make room for mental peace. The benefits of regular exercise are enormous while the cost of doing it is almost nothing. And yet most of us fail to do it.
Starting exercises is easy. You wake up early in the morning, perform some exercise for beginners but after 3 to 4 days, the regular routine kicks in and the couch becomes your best friend again. This kind of activity doesn’t provide impressive results. You get the real benefits only when you do exercise daily.
But these things are easier said than done. To do exercise daily and make it a habit, you will need some practical tips that can push you out of your bed even when you don’t want it. We have jotted down 7 tips that will help you make exercise a habit. Give them a read:
1. Set a Place, Time, & Routine
You realize that there are many advantages of regular exercise and hence you decide that you are going to start exercising tomorrow. Tomorrow arrives and you keep yourself busy with your daily chores. And the day just ends like it used to be – without any exercise.
Instead of thinking that you are going to start exercising tomorrow, you can instead set a specific time, place, and routine. For example, you can tell yourself that I am going to go for an evening walk for at least 1 km in the nearby park, half an hour before my favourite TV show starts. By providing yourself with the exact details about how you are doing to start, you increase the chances of doing daily exercise.
2. Use Tech, Remind Yourself
If you use a to-do list app, you can add exercise as a task to the daily list. Assign a time to the task and set a daily reminder for it. If you don’t use to-do list apps, a simple alarm on the phone will also do the job. Set the alarm of a time around 30 minutes prior to the timing of the exercise. This way, you will get enough time to complete any unfinished task.
The purpose here is to make sure that you wrap up your work on time. And don’t allow yourself any delays. A habit of daily exercise forms easily when you do it over and over again at the same time.
Take It Slow
You get all the benefits of regular exercise only when you don’t push your body off limits. Most people when they start doing regular exercise at home or gym start it with enthusiasm and a lot of energy. But too much exercise at the start can also lead to burnout.
Start with simple exercises like treadmill or jogging. Perform exercises for 20 minutes a day. Once your body gets used to the kind of stress, you can increase the timing by 10 to 15 minutes each week. After a month or two, you can increase the intensity of the exercises. Along with the importance of regular exercise, it is also a must to realise the importance of taking things slow.
Add The Fun Factor
When you associate a habit with fun and enjoyment, you come back again and again to it. That is why it is important in the beginning to focus on pleasure instead of pain. If you are going on a walk, you can enjoy the scenery, smile at fellow walkers, and experience the fresh air. Some people like to listen to some kind of music while they exercise; you can also try it.
Prepare In Advance
Friction makes it harder to convert a new task into a habit. In other words, the lesser the friction, the higher the chances of you being successful. In the case of daily exercise, a possible source of friction can be assembling your gear together. Your water bottle is in the kitchen, the mat is in the store, shoes are nowhere to be found, and you are supposed to do Pilates on the terrace.
To make exercise a habit, you have to reduce this kind of friction by preparing in advance. If you have scheduled your regular exercise in the morning, you can assemble the gear just before going to bed. Or if you are planning to do exercises in the evening for weight loss, you can take out 5 minutes any time of the day and assemble the gear.
Mix and Match
If you include only one type of exercise in your daily exercise routine, you are going to bore yourself pretty quickly. Instead of that, you can try something like triathlon training which includes swimming, bicycling, and running.
By performing daily exercise this way, you also use a different set of muscles. If you pound the same muscles again and again, they do not get the chance to recover.
Recovery Is Must
You won’t get all the benefits of regular exercise unless you give your body enough rest time to recover. When you prepare your regular exercise plan, make sure that you take out one day of rest. During this day, you can do a relatively simple exercise that you don’t practise on regular exercise days.
The benefits of daily workout are endless. Once you start doing the daily exercise, you will experience the change yourself. You don’t even have to wait for months to realise the importance of regular exercise.
This journey of getting fit becomes easier when you incorporate daily exercise as a habit in your daily life. When you experience the real joy of exercise, it is easy to get lured by speed and do everything faster and more intensely. But to ensure that you don’t burn out, you have to be mindful and take it slow.