people will tell you it's a challenge getting started on their fitness
activity. Whether it's going for a walk, a bike ride, or a visit to the
gym, most people have to muster-up the energy to get organized and out
the door. But they do it. Once they're warmed up and into their
activity, a feeling of exhilaration takes over and they feel great.
to get active, and stay active month after month? It's up to you. You
have to find your own special source of inspiration to get up and go.
There's no boss at the helm to guide you, cheer you on, or keep you
motivated. You're on your own. You have to take the initiative,
motivate yourself, and make it happen. If you are waiting for a better
time, dismiss the thought. There will never be a perfect time. The best
time is now. As someone once said, "It may not be your fault that you
are down but it's your duty to get up."
think that you can't do it. You can do it as well as the next person.
All you need is a strong desire and a vision of what you want to
achieve. Ask yourself, "How long has it been since I felt really
great?" Could it be that you have forgotten what it feels like to have
a zest for life, to be full of energy and bursting with enthusiasm. If
so, don't blame it on old age. Old and tired has more to do with
attitude, outlook, and lifestyle than the calendar. Here are 10
techniques you can use to keep motivated.
- Establish a set routine for your activity. Keep an activity calendar
indicating the time of day and days of the week you have set aside for
your exercise. Keep it visible and mark it up to suit your taste. Tell
yourself that these times are set aside for your health. and only an
emergency will allow you to deviate from your plan.
- Check off your completed activities to visually indicate your
accomplishments. If you prefer, keep a record of your activities in a
small notebook. If walking is your preference, you may be able to
accumulate enough kilometres to equal the distance from, say, Winnipeg
to Brandon, or beyond. That should give you bragging rights within your
circle of friends.
- Every once in a while review your record of progress and accomplishments, then bask in the glory of it all.
- Despite the above, be flexible. If you want to switch from walking to
cycling, do it. Your goal is to stay fit, keep your program
interesting, and have fun.
- Tell your friends
and family about your enthusiasm for an active lifestyle. You may
think, "I'm not going to tell anyone in case I quit", but that's a
mistake. Telling others about your activity program is one way to stay
- If possible, team-up with your
spouse, or join a group for your physical activity. Other people add
energy and enthusiasm to what you are doing. Consider joining an
outdoor club, where you are sure to meet a lot of interesting, like
- If for some reason you miss a
couple of sessions, don't beat yourself up about it. Focus on getting
back into your routine again. That's what counts.
- Read books and activity oriented literature to learn more about the benefits active living.
- Associate with active people, you will find them more exciting. Avoid complainers and grouches. They'll drag you down.
- Give yourself a small reward every time you take part in an activity
session. Your reward can be as simple as telling yourself that you did
well. An instructor I know ends each group activity session by leading
them in a round of loud applause. When I first witnessed this outburst
of applause and cheering I wondered what was going on, but I soon
realized that everyone was simply saying, "Hey, we did well and we feel