Ever wonder how some people manage to stay committed to working out, while others struggle? If you keep skipping your workouts, it’s not because you’re lazy or don’t have time. Believe it or not, much of what is standing in your way is how you’re thinking about exercise. Rather than depending solely on willpower and guilt to get you going, implement these 5 research-backed habits of people who never miss a workout.
Never miss a workout with these 5 habits
The first few weeks of a new fitness routine, you couldn’t be more stoked. You practically pop out of bed to hit the gym—rain or shine, snow or sleet! And then life happens. A colleague calls an early-morning meeting. A nasty cold strikes. You start to feel deflated, and your willpower fades.
Sound familiar? It’s a “vicious cycle of failure,” according to Michelle Segar, PhD, director of the Sport, Health, and Activity Research and Policy Center at the University of Michigan. For 20 years, she’s been studying motivation to figure out why so many of us struggle to keep it—especially when it comes to healthy habits.
Count everything—and add it up
Physical activity doesn’t have to be time-consuming or intense to count as exercise. “Many of the things you’re already doing qualify as healthy movement,” says Segar. So give yourself credit for crossing the parking lot (2 minutes), walking the dog (10 minutes), playing tag with your kids (15 minutes), gardening (20 minutes), even pushing a cart around the grocery store (25 minutes). “Virtually all of my clients have told me that the notion that ‘everything counts’ has been transformative for them,” Segar adds. “It makes them feel successful every time they move, which leads to higher energy levels all day long.”
Focus on the now
Once you start counting all the physical activity in your day, you realize it’s possible to squeeze in a little more (without changing into workout clothes). “Rather than thinking, I don’t have time, you start thinking, I can fit this in!” Segar explains. Whenever you have a small pocket of time—even if its just five minutes—ask yourself, What can I do right now? You might end up jogging the stairs 10 times, or knocking out a series of ab moves on the floor.
More habits after the jump.
thumbnail courtesy of health.com