5 Hacks to Help Make Exercise a Habit
It's not necessarily hard to start and maintain a regular workout routine, it’s just so easy to not work out. Especially if you work full time and have children, and those children have activities, you try to keep your house clean and maintain some sort of social life with your friends!! Seems like exercise falls to the bottom of the priorities list. But if you ask yourself - “What is the one thing I can do today that will make doing ALLLL those other things easier?” The answer is - “Exercise”
Why? Because working out will help you handle stress better, have more energy, be stronger for everyday tasks, help you sleep better, and overall be happier and healthier.
So let’s get to it- Here are 5 Life Hacks to Help you make exercise a habit.
1- Get Your 7-8 Hours- (Yawn……. Boring!)
This seems to be one of the biggest challenges of the modern-day “athlete”. Between family and work demands on your time and trying to catch up on Netflix, sleep has fallen off the priority list for many busy women. Some of the benefits of catching our ZZZs? It’s easier to wake early in the morning, your workouts are more effective because you recover quicker and see gains faster. You have more energy to work out (and reversely a good workout will help you get better sleep) Sleep helps you regulate hunger hormones and helps the body balance blood sugar better. Set an alarm or reminder for bedtime- it will help you stay more disciplined, have a bedtime routine
2- Little Piles of Success.
Set your workout clothes out the night before - or keep your gym bag in the car. I’ve gotten into the habit of separating my workout clothes while I am folding laundry into outfits- pants, top, and sports bra, so I keep them together so that I do not waste time looking for the right thing to wear. It really only takes me about 5 minutes of distraction before I decide that I really don’t want to work out, this little process eliminates one more excuse.
3- Adopt the First Five mentality.
Commit to exercising for only 5 minutes. Ok- this may sound crazy but here is why this works. The hardest part of working out is getting started- the first 5 minutes are usually the hardest and once you catch your stride you aren’t going to stop. So whether it’s a walk around the neighborhood, a kickboxing class at the gym, or a HIIT Youtube video, commit to just get started.\Tell yourself if you don’t want to keep going after the first 5 then you’ve kept your promise to yourself.
Sign up for an early morning class at the gym- either virtual or in person. I like this better than having a workout buddy. If your workout buddy ditches a session you are more likely to also. However, a fitness class is going to happen with or without your workout buddy. Find a gym that has a Member App that requires you to sign up for the class ahead of time and will fine you if you no-show! You are much more likely to show up if there is money involved!
5- Focus on how you will feel afterward.
Do you know that euphoric feeling that is caused by the happy endorphins that your brain releases after a good sweat? Each time you workout, take a couple of minutes during the cool down to focus on how good you feel. Commit that to memory- and next time you are looking for an excuse to skip the workout take a deep breath and let that memory wash over you.
My members tell me all the time, “I almost didn’t come, but I forced myself, I feel so much better now.”
I’ve never heard someone say “I regret that workout!”