Are you ready for bathing suits, pools, warm weather? Preparing for a vacation? Or, simply looking to get healthy? Whatever the reason, starting an exercise routine is easier than you think. Though not everyone realizes it, Physical Therapists regularly build exercise programs for patients that aren’t focused on rehabilitation but rather are created to help patients build and maintain their physical health.
So how do you go about starting a program? Here are 4 great way to get started:
1. Set a goal and frame exercises around that goal
If you know what to work towards, you can program a routine set to a specific goal. If your goal is to climb stairs with less difficulty, swimming might not be the best exercise. Or if you want to walk farther, you’re not going to lift weights overhead. The more you can mold exercises toward your goal, the more likely you are to stick with the routine. What is your goal?
2. Measure your progress with realistic expectations… and adequate time If your goal is weight loss, wait at least a month before measuring your progress. Why? Because it is very unlikely that you will lose 10 pounds in 1-2 weeks. The same thing applies if you are trying to increase your walking tolerance. It’s not likely that you will go from walking 1 mile to 5 miles in 2 weeks.
Realistic expectations will allow you to focus on your day-to-day activities without getting discouraged. And when it is time to measure your progress, you can always restructure your goals for the following month.
3. Make the activity fun
If the activity you chose for an exercise program isn’t stimulating, you are more likely to stop. For example, walking outdoors is a great exercise if you are someone who enjoys being outside. If you don’t like being outside, then maybe treadmill walking is better for you.
When you are starting an exercise program, don’t force yourself to do an activity that is not fun. Once you have a routine established, you can later integrate exercises that might not be fun, but are designed to help you work towards your specific goal.
4. Stick to a routine We are creatures of habit. Wake up. Drink coffee. EXERCISE. Shower. Go to work. If we make a conscious effort of doing our exercise routine, it will become just that. Routine.
Most people fail within the first 2 weeks of an exercise program. Why? Because there wasn’t a consistent routine set. What routine will you set up?
Need more help? Give us a call at 586.779.8892 or set up a consultation right here online for direct assistance. We can get you started and better prepared to reach your specific goal!