Tired of promising yourself you’ll start exercising and then giving up? Learn how to make a fitness routine you’ll stick to with these tips!
Sometimes starting a fitness routine turns out to be the easiest part of the process. When you’re excited by the thought of beginning to workout, it’s easy to get yourself to the gym (or to that yoga mat you rolled out in front of your TV).
However, after that first day, you start to face burnout in the form of sore muscles because you didn’t properly judge how much you could actually handle. So you give yourself an extra rest day to recover, and then another, and suddenly it’s been two weeks.
If you’ve been in that situation, you’re not alone. If you want your workout plan to stick this time, here are some tips and tricks to make your fitness routine sustainable.
Set Achievable Goals
A lot of people start their fitness journey with a goal that’s very difficult to achieve, like losing ten pounds in a few weeks or getting a waist and booty like Kim K as soon as possible. Instead, when it comes to learning how to make a fitness routine that sticks, try to set goals that are less about aesthetics and more about strength or endurance.
For example, a more achievable goal than weight loss would be being able to run an entire mile straight or being able to add more reps or more weight to certain exercises. Choosing a goal that centers around building a healthy habit is the best of all — this type of goal is easily measurable.
Shift Your Mindset
Shifting your mindset is another imporatnt part of learning how to make fitness routine. Instead of looking down on yourself for all of the things that you can’t do at the start of your fitness journey, focus on all the things that you can do. If you can briskly walk an entire mile, that’s a win, even if your goal is to be able to run a mile eventually.
If you could already do something, it wouldn’t be a goal of yours. Talking negatively to yourself won’t help you achieve your goals, but positive self-talk can go a long way to help you stay on track.
Check With Your Doctor
Our next tip on how to make a fitness routine you’ll keep is to check with your doctor before you do anything. If you have any chronic illnesses, this is an especially important step since there may be certain exercises or movements you should avoid.
If you were in high school, it would be ideal to have an exam performed six to eight weeks before a sports season to give your health care provider time to treat any underlying issues. If you’re out of high school, you can check with your doctor any time prior to starting to work out.
You really don’t have a timeline as strict as the start of a season, so your doctor can treat any issues and recommend you some exercises to do and to avoid any time of the year.
Find Something You Love
Finding an exercise you love is a very important part of learning how to make a fitness routine that sticks. Perhaps you have a friend that told you yoga changed their life, or maybe you follow an influencer on Instagram who swears by HIIT, but that doesn’t mean those forms of exercise are ideal for you. You can try these types of exercise out, but don’t expect to immediately love them as much as other people do.
You might try yoga and love it, but you also might try it and decide that you want something with more cardio or more of a focus on building muscle. It may take you some time to find a form of exercise that you enjoy, so don’t give up if you try one form of working out and don’t immediately fall in love with it.
Starting with an overly ambitious plan is one of the best ways to set yourself up for failure when learning how to make a fitness routine that you’ll keep. If you start smaller, you can begin to build the habit of working out and being healthier without it overwhelming you. Starting with two to three workouts a week is a good starting point. It’s easy to add more down the line, but starting with too many can lead to burnout or even injury.
In addition, you should aim to start with beginner or basic workouts. If you are doing a workout meant for those with intermediate or advanced levels of fitness, you probably won’t be able to complete it.
If you’re going to an in-person workout class, look for one that is aimed towards beginners or isn’t aimed towards a specific fitness level. In classes like that, the instructor will likely be giving modifications for beginner to advanced level moves.
Figure Out What Time Works For You
Next on our list of how to make a fitness routine tips is figuring out what time works the best for you. Some people thrive when they workout first thing in the morning, whereas others need to work out in the afternoon or evening. If you know that you’re an early bird or a night owl, make sure to make your workout schedule fit with that. If you think you might be able to fit in a workout during your lunch break, try it out. If it doesn’t end up working out, at least you will know.
Get Proper Rest
Rest and recovery are just as important as your actual workouts when it comes to learning how to make a fitness routine you’ll stick with and achieving your fitness goals. You have to give your body the proper time to recover from a workout, which is part of the reason why you should be starting with only two to three workouts a week.
Make sure you’re getting an adequate amount of sleep and make sure that the sleep you’re getting is high-quality. If your mattress is feeling uncomfortable, try rotating or flipping it — most brands recommend doing this somewhere between every three months and every year.
Make a Plan For If You Get Off Track
Our last tip on learning how to make a fitness routine is to have a plan for when you get off track. It’s inevitable that you’ll miss a day every once in a while — life happens. It’s important not to beat yourself up for missing a day and letting it get you completely off track. Before you start, make a plan of how you’ll get yourself back on track so that you can avoid letting one missed day entirely derail your workout.
Final Thoughts on How to Make a Fitness Routine That Sticks
Whatever reason you have for starting your new fitness routine, make sure that you are building a routine that is a habit you can keep. Avoid becoming part of the 80% of people who don’t keep their New Year’s resolutions by keeping these tips in mind while you’re creating your workout routine.