Exercise is important for health and weight loss.
In studies, people who exercised for one hour per day, five days per week, were considerably more likely to reach their target weight and then keep it off thereafter than those who exercised less frequently.
The type of exercise you choose to do is not that important and while some forms of exercises may burn more calories than others, the difference is really not that significant.
What is significant is your ability to exercise consistently!
The benefits of exercise are cumulative.
One workout, five workouts, twenty workouts – any benefits you experience will be very small.
But when the number of workouts you have completed total in the hundreds?
That’s when magic happens.
Sadly, you cannot store fitness and the occasional workout is almost as bad as no workout at all.
But, if you can learn to stick to your workout plan for months and even years at a time, you will see benefits that go beyond simple weight loss.
Such benefits include:
- Less stress
- Improved sleep
- More energy
- Better sex life
- Greater strength making everyday activities easier
- More confidence
- Fewer incidences of illness
- Fewer incidences of joint pain
- Greater endurance…
It’s a long list!
However, you’ll only enjoy these benefits of you can become a habitual exerciser.
And even if you manage to string a decent run of workouts together, remember that you cannot store fitness.
If you want to continue to enjoy the benefits of exercise, you need to continue exercising!
Some people are naturally motivated and have developed the habit of exercising regularly.
For them, exercise is simply something they do each and every day.
It’s as much a part of their day as showering, eating, and sleeping.
Conversely, for other people, exercise is a necessary evil and one which, if truth be told, they’d rather not do.
Low levels of motivation can significantly lower your likelihood of sticking to any exercise plan.
If you have trouble sticking to your exercise plan, firstly, make sure your plan is something you actually enjoy.
That will significantly increase your motivation.
Sticking to what might be the best workout in the world is all but impossible if you really don’t enjoy it.
Next, consider signing up for an exercise course such as a weight loss bootcamp or similar.
This will help your workout adherence by forcing you to exercise at the same time on the same days.
Pay in advance if possible as doing so has been shown to increase exercise adherences even more.
Finally, get yourself an exercise partner so you don’t have to go it alone.
Agree to meet your exercise partner at the gym at a predetermined time.
Your exercise partner makes you more accountable and also will also provide support.
Once you have done all that, try this unusually clever but devilishly effective method for virtually guaranteeing you exercise five days a week for the coming month…
– Ask a close friend to help you get to the gym every day for 22 days over the course of a month – take weekends off
– Sign up for an exercise class at your local gym (preferred)
– Create a daily gym schedule with places to mark off each successful day
– Give your friend $100 in 10s.
Tell them they can keep $30 of it for helping you
– Instruct your friend to keep a $10 bill every time you DO NOT text them a photo from the gym by a certain hour of the day.
When you text your friend, have your friend mark off that day on the schedule.
– After the first month, if you feel you still need help, repeat this method.
Do as many cycles as you need for exercise to become habitual.
Can you cheat?
Yes, of course you can, but it will only hurt you.
We humans hate to lose – especially money.
In studies done by the world-famous Mayo clinic, people who were incentivized to exercise with money were much more likely to stick to their exercise plan than those that were not.
While it’s unlikely you will find someone to pay you to work out, you can use the same financial trick by “fining” yourself for missed workouts.
No one wants to give money away unnecessarily!
THE BOTTOM LINE
If you have trouble sticking to your exercise plan, use this fiendish trick to increase your motivation and willpower.
After a few successful cycles, you should find that you have developed the exercise habit and have become a self-motivated exerciser.