Have The Wheels Fallen Off Of Your Workout Schedule This Summer?
Summer schedules can be tricky. Kids are home from school, you’re trying to get away for a few days of vacation, or maybe you’re indulging in a staycation. On top of that it’s hotter than you-know-what.
All of this can lead to not enough time, not enough energy, and not enough enthusiasm to keep all of the balls in the air. One of the first balls to drop is the scheduled exercise time.
It happens to everyone now and then. The good news is it doesn’t have to be permanent. Here are ten tips to help you get all of the wheels back on the bus and you back on track with your workouts.
1. Ten Times Three – Just because you don’t have an hour to go to the gym or meet with your morning waking or running group doesn’t mean you should forget about exercise altogether. Take the advice of Dr.Glen Gaesser, a professor and director of the Health Lifestyles Research Center in Arizona State University, who recently completed research on the benefits of three 10 minutes workouts a day.
Dr. Gaesser does not suggest that the 3 X 10 regime will turn you into an athlete, but it will provide an amount of physical activity adequate to prevent health issues like high blood pressure. If you have ten minutes to do any kind of physical activity three times a day, this will get you through until you have bigger blocks of time to devote to your exercise program.
2. Digital Personal Trainer – There are a lot of apps out there and you may have tried several of them. If you’ve found one that still works for you, stick with it. If you’re looking for something new, Gain has released a digital personal trainer app that will build a customized workout just for you. Gain has released the app and it’s is available for Android and iPhone and has plans to release one for the iPad. The good news is, it’s free!
3. Set A Goal – Not just any goal. Set a stretch goal such as running your first 5K this fall. If you get started now following Cool Running’s nine week Couch to 5K program, you’ll be ready by October 1. You can download a copy of the program here.
Go ahead a pick out a race while you’re at it. The best way to stay motivated to train for an event is to sign up for one. Invest a little money. Put it on the calendar. If you’ve already done a 5K, move the goal up to a 10 or 15K event or even a bi or triathlon. When you add a swimming or biking leg to your race you’ll involve a wider variety of muscles, increase your overall fitness level, and have a new challenge to work on.
4. Find a Fitness Icon And Follow Them On Facebook and Twitter – Who’s your fitness icon? I follow Cathe Friedrich and Chalene Johnson on Facebook. Throughout the week I receive newsletters, invitations to events, and daily motivation from both of them.
You’d be surprised by the amount of inspiration that can be delivered by following high energy people. These fitness rock stars are successful because of their ability to create excitement. Pick someone that you can relate to that will excite you and give them a follow on Facebook or Twitter.
5. Make a Monetary Investment To Help You Reach Your Goal – I linked to Stacy Johnson’s article in the Link Love post on Friday because I think this is good advice and there are so many options and ways to do this. I have a Facebook friend that recently posted a picture of her new compression socks. She is super excited about them and claims they are helping her meet her goals when she runs.
Compression socks might not ring your bell, but something out there will and you don’t have to spend a lot of money. A new tank, hat, pedometer, workout DVD or head band are some ideas for a way to make a minor investment that could have a big payoff.
I love peace signs so I purchased a couple of peaceful head bands before I ran the half marathon in April. (The picture on this post is of my peace sign head bands. Don’t you love them?)
6. Back Up Whatever You Do With High Energy Music – Whether I’m at work trying to get through a long afternoon, on a morning jog, cleaning house, or getting ready for guests having high energy music playing will keep my spirits up give me that extra push I need to complete the task.
I like re-mixed fitness music that takes familiar tunes and adds a little extra boom to every song has a certain number beats per minute. Some good options for this are Power Music and Dynamix. Pandora has even added workout mixes to their library. GNC came out with a free fitness music download a few months ago which gives you a chance to try out a re-mixed fitness download before you purchase one. You can read more about the GNC mix here.
7. Read Something Inspirational – Reading about health and wellness will help you stay focused on your own goals. I recently gave away a hardback copy of “The Wellness Code” in the hopes of providing some brain nourishment to someone. My primary intent was to provide a tool that would help the winner maintain their motivation.
A book more specific to exercise and weight loss is “Making The Cut: The 30-Day Diet and Fitness Plan for the Strongest, Sexiest You” by Jillian Michaels. True to form, Jillian’s book takes a no-nonsense approach to getting rid of those unwanted pounds.
8. Try Something New – Boredom can kill motivation faster than just about anything. If you’re in a funk you need to try something new. Interval training, a fitness class you’ve not tried before, or a session with a personal trainer can help you get engaged again. What about a HIIT or Tabata workout? If you’ve been doing the same workout forever, a different method can provide a new and unexpected challenge.
Get out of your comfort zone and try something new. Not only will it be good for you physically, it will wake up your brain!
9. Don’t Allow The Weakest Link To Impede Your Progress – I’ve been thinking about this quite a bit lately and I’m sure a full length blog post is coming relative to this topic. For now I’ll be brief:
How often do you allow someone else’s negativity or lack of motivation to bring you down? If you’re depending on someone else to motivate you to attend a Zumba class, go for a morning run, or take a walk over your lunch hour, there’s a good chance your motivation will wane as soon as your buddy loses interest. Having a workout partner is a good idea, but don’t allow their excuses to become yours. Developing the autonomy to be able to head out on your own when someone bails on you is fundamental to your success.
10. Lead The Way – If you’re following #9 this will be easy for you. The idea is to be an inspiration to those around you that have similar goals. Rather than depending on others to motivate you, take on a leadership role and make it a goal to help and inspire others. Once you have people looking to you for encouragement it will be easy for you to stay motivated because you won’t want to let them down.
Over To You
What do you do to get re-charged when the dog days of summer, the holidays, or the stress of daily life gets in the way of your workout plans? Please share.