Get Moving: Summer Quick Tricks

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For many of us the most difficult part of including exercise in our daily life is getting past our mental block against exercise. Here are a few tips on how you can change your attitude about exercise and begin to think of it as a normal part of your daily routine. You might even start to look forward to your workout!

  1. The Five Minute Rule: Make a deal with yourself that you are going to exercise for 5 minutes. No matter how busy you may be, you can set aside 5 minutes each day to work out. The deal is you can stop exercising after 5 minutes if you want to, but you have to stick with it for those 5 minutes. Most people will find that when the 5 minutes are up they will continue exercising for a full 30 minutes or longer without much resistance. It’s the getting started that is the most difficult part.
  2. Use the Buddy System: Find a workout buddy who will be able to offer moral support and commit to beginning an exercise routine with you. Both you and your friend will be more likely to stick with an exercise plan if you feel accountable to someone else. We don’t like letting our friends down, so we will exercise on days when we normally would have made up an excuse to skip a work out. Turning exercise into a social activity can also make the experience more enjoyable.
  3. Distract Yourself: Exercise while you are watching TV or listening to upbeat music. You are more likely to exercise harder and for longer if you are not constantly watching the clock and wishing for it to be over.
  4. Bribe Yourself: Rewards work! Make sure to reward yourself for meeting exercise goals. This can include immediate rewards such as taking a relaxing bubble bath and longer term rewards such as a buying a new outfit or treating yourself to a massage for sticking with your daily exercise program for a whole month.
  5. Visualize: When you are sitting on your couch coming up with excuses not to exercise, take a few minutes to visualize yourself exercising and feeling good. Imagine being in the last stretch of your run and how good your body feels. Or imagine the stress leaving your body as your breathe in fresh air and release the tension from your muscles.