HOME > Health & Fitness >
HOW TO STAY ON TRACK WITH YOUR FITNESS PLAN
Many of us come up with a fitness plan, usually with the very best of intentions, but little by little, we can fall by the wayside with our goals. We might struggle to stay motivated during the winter months, especially when it becomes a little too nippy outside. We might become tired or suffer from ill health, and these factors can hinder our ability to continue with our plans. And we might also simply become bored by what we are doing, and so we fill our time with other, more enjoyable activities that don't always pertain to the goals we set ourselves. To ensure you keep up with your fitness plan, whatever it might be, here are some suggestions that we hope you find helpful.
Remember the 'why'
Why did you create a fitness plan in the first place? It's an important question, as the reason for keeping fit should be used as a driving force for sticking to your fitness goals. So, you might want to lose weight, for example. Or you might want to gain extra muscle. You might even want to prepare your body for an upcoming sporting or fitness event. Whatever the reason, remember the 'why,' and bring it to mind whenever you start to talk yourself out of exercising.
Take baby steps
This won't apply to fitness experts, but if you're relatively new to the world of exercising, then this should be something you consider. If you do too much too soon, you might only tire yourself out, or cause yourself an injury, and become discouraged. Push yourself by all means, but know your limits. Do half a circuit around the park instead of two. Lift the weights that you can comfortably manage before attempting anything heavier. And follow the same principle within the fitness plan that you have developed for yourself. It's about building up your body for bigger and greater things. So, be patient and pace yourself. As the saying goes, 'don't run before you can walk.'
Work with a personal trainer
A personal trainer will look at your fitness plan and will give you the support you need to meet your goals. They will also advise you on any changes you might need to make to ensure your plan is a success. And, of course, they will be a motivating factor for you to keep going - as with the relevant skills and experience - they will know what it takes to spur you on to be the best that you can be. You can probably source a personal trainer at your local gym, and there are those who run their own businesses too. Andy Griffiths - online personal trainer is one example, so take a look at his site if you want online tuition or research others in your area if you require face-to-face tuition offline.
Find a friend
If you have a friend with matching fitness goals to your own, buddy up and work together. They will ensure you aren't rooted to your sofa every time you feel like giving up, and you can do your bit to motivate them. You should also enjoy your exercise routine more with a friend alongside you. You can talk and laugh together, and take part in activities that are better designed for two people rather than one. And talking about enjoyment…
Mix things up a little
If your exercise routine becomes just that (a routine), then mix it up. Try different types of workouts instead of sticking rigidly to one. When you're at the gym, use a range of machines instead of sticking to the same type that you tend to go for. And be creative in the way you exercise, as you might gain more enjoyment. Go climbing with your mates. Play active games outside with your kids. And take inspiration from these other fun ways to exercise if you need any further inspiration. By taking such steps, you are hardly likely to get bored when trying to stick to your fitness goals, and you are more likely to experience greater degrees of success.
Don't let time defeat you
It's all very well and good coming up with a fitness plan, but if you have a busy schedule, you might not have the time to stick to it. Well, that's the theory anyway. In truth, it is possible to make time in your day for exercise, so you shouldn't have many excuses not to. You could get up earlier in the day to engage in some form of fitness before the busyness of your day begins. You could keep weights or other types of exercise equipment at home if you don't have time to get to the gym. And you could find ways to exercise at work, perhaps by going for a walk or a run during your break times, or by trying one of these desk exercises whenever you get the chance.
Track your progress
Keep a fitness journal. Wear a Fitbit. Look in the mirror. Download an app. And get the measuring scales out. These are just some of the ways to check your progress, and you will get a better understanding of what you might need to do to stay on track with your fitness plan if you aren't meeting your goals. Do whatever works for you, make those changes in your exercise routine when you need to, and reward yourself whenever you meet one of your fitness goals. This last point should certainly act as a motivator for you, especially if you have the willpower to resist treats beforehand.
Don't give up!
There might be a day when you sleep past the alarm clock and miss your exercise slot. There could be a week when you are too ill to attend the local gym. And there might be an evening when you pig out on food you know you shouldn't have. It's at these points that you might decide to give up on your fitness plan, especially if you worry that you have fallen behind with your goals. But don't give up! Life happens, mistakes get made, and you won't always be Mr. Perfect. No matter what your setbacks are, resolve to get back on track, as you will stand a better chance of completing your fitness plan if you do.