10 Tips to Create a Fitness Program that will Fit You
Everyone faces challenges when it comes to making time for fitness. After all, there’s a lot of competing priorities. Establishing a fitness routine is a priority you’ll want to put some effort into. Here are some things to think about as you plan your fitness routine:
- Talk with your doctor. Your primary care doctor can go over your medical history and any conditions you have to help you plan appropriate fitness options. This is a great way to get input on what types of exercises would be best to help you achieve your health goals and what limitations you need to be aware of.
- Identify fitness activities you will actually do. Be honest with yourself. If you hate boot camp workouts, don’t try to make them part of your routine. Think of the things that will leave you feeling, “That was awesome, and I feel great!”
- Pick your time of day. There’s a lot of debate about when is the best time of day to work out. The reality? The best time of day to work out is the time that you will actually stick to. If you’re a morning person, try fitting a workout into your morning routine.
- Make it social. A lot of people are more likely to stick to a fitness routine if they have a workout buddy. If that sounds like you, set up a fitness routine with your friends or coworkers, or participate in a regular fitness class—have fun with it!
- Start slow. If you don’t currently exercise regularly, start slow and work your way into more frequent or intense workouts. Steady progression is important for successful fitness routines so that you continue to get stronger and physically fit, without hurting yourself.
- Plan for obstacles. Stuff comes up throughout the day that can throw you off track. Have a plan B for when this happens. Keep walking shoes at your desk in case your post-work run gets bumped because of family priorities. That way, you can still sneak in a couple ten-minute walking breaks.
- Mix it up. Doing the same thing over and over works for some people. However, adding variety is not only good to help you keep your interest in your fitness routine, it’s also a good way to keep your muscles guessing. This will help you continue to get stronger or improve your endurance.
- Try new things. The fitness world is constantly coming up with new, fun ways to get people moving and stay active. By being open to new ideas and trying new things, you not only get a healthy dose of exercise, but you can also make new friends and enjoy new hobbies.
- Be flexible. For some people, there’s just no way to set a “routine.” If your day-to-day schedule is constantly changing, you can still fit in some exercise. Think in terms of ten to 15 minutes at a time, and think of activities that can be done anywhere. That will be less stressful than trying to carve out a half hour to an hour for a workout.
- Keep it simple. As nice as it is to have a gym membership and access to different workout machines, you can get a great workout without any equipment. Push your coffee table out of the way and embrace the basics. (There’s a reason why things like squats and push-ups have been recommended bodyweight exercises for decades!)