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Kent Probst, BS, MEd
Kent Probst is the owner of Long Healthy Life Blog
Why Staying on Track with Fitness Goals is Important
It’s no secret that exercise is good for your mind, body, and soul. Physical activity has the ability to increase your metabolism and energy, promote immunity health, and help maintain or lose weight. According to the CDC, 25% of U.S. adults are not active enough to protect their health. Learning how to stay on track with fitness goals will yield benefits, leading to a long, healthy life.
If exercise benefits your overall wellbeing, why aren’t we doing more of it? Sometimes our internal dialogue takes over with excuses to skip a workout. If you’re looking to prioritize your health, here are some ways to help you stay on track with your fitness goals.
How to Motivate Yourself to Stay on Track with Fitness Goals
1. Set Realistic Goals
Not knowing where to start when it comes to your fitness goals, or setting unrealistic standards for yourself are top reasons why people feel overwhelmed when making a fitness plan. Start out by setting simple goals, advancing to a more extended range the more you develop your routine.
For example, a short-term goal might be to walk 15 minutes per day, while a long-term goal might be to run a 5k. Be sure to make your goals realistic and achievable, as it’s easy to get overwhelmed if your goals are unrealistic.
Creating a fitness plan will hold you accountable and encourage you to push yourself to see long-lasting results. One of the biggest motivation mistakes you can make is to try and do too much at once, creating a sense of anxiety and feelings of failure.
Setting goals using the SMART method can keep you on track and remind you of your priorities.
2. Find Activities You Enjoy
Finding exercises and activities you enjoy doing is one of the best ways to set yourself up for success and improve your quality of life. It’s recommended that adults do 75-150 minutes of vigorous to moderate intensity physical activity a week, so it’s important to do activities you enjoy to stay motivated.
Options include walking, running, biking, Tai Chi, swimming, yoga, and kickboxing, to name a few. To keep looking forward to exercising, try rotating what exercises you do weekly to help combat exercise boredom.
If you’re currently unsure of what you enjoy, experiment with your schedule until you find what’s best for you.
When you enjoy what you’re doing you’ll be motivated to keep on track of your goals.
3. Create a Successful Environment
Finding activities you enjoy is an important part of setting yourself up for success, but it’s just as important to have an environment you feel comfortable in to help you achieve your goals.
Going to the gym can be a great way to meet your fitness goals, as it gives you the chance to socialize and use specific equipment.
However, it isn’t always the best for a busy lifestyle. Having other options such as a trail you enjoy running on, or a personalized home gym where you can go full out can help you keep progressing toward your goals.
Dedicating an at-home space for exercise can help get you in the proper mindset, even on the days you feel less motivated. Choosing a space in your home where you can effectively and safely work out is the first step.
Recently, homeowners have been transforming their basements and garages into personal home gyms. This may seem like a pricey investment, but can be more affordable than you think.
Using the equity built in your home can help you financially when expanding your space, allowing you to have extra money in your pocket for equipping your dream home gym.
4. Find What Motivates You
Working out can be intimidating. It’s normal to have goals in mind and not know how to tackle them. Starting off your fitness journey with the guidance of a trainer can give you external motivation to help you build a plan and overcome obstacles.
There are trainers for all personalities, fitness levels, and budgets, educating you on how to maximize effectiveness and reduce the risk of injury. Scheduling regular sessions with a trainer may give you the boost you need.
Sometimes all we need is a little push in the right direction. If a trainer isn’t the direction you want, there are plenty of other options.
Invite friends or family to join you in completing a virtual fitness challenge, take a fitness class at your local health club, or download a fitness app to guide your workout.
5. Develop a Meal Plan
The foods you eat have a great impact on your fitness goals. If you’re not fueling your body properly, you’re likely to not see the results you’re hoping for. Nutrition and fitness go hand-in-hand, and if one is not properly met, the other will suffer.
The food we nourish your body with affects your energy, and lacking energy negatively impacts your workout. To keep your energy up, drink plenty of fluids and eat small amounts of nutrient-rich foods frequently.
Start off your day with nutritious food, followed by snacking throughout the day on healthy foods such as fruits, vegetables, and nuts to help sustain your energy level.
The food you eat also impacts muscle recovery post-workout, so be sure to fuel yourself with healthy fats, carbohydrates, and protein to receive essential nutrients.
Successfully Putting Your Plan Together
Fitness goals look different for everyone and sometimes the hardest part is just getting started. Staying physically active is a great way to improve your health and boost your mood. As you age, keeping active can help you continue doing the things you enjoy.
Taking steps towards a healthy lifestyle and sticking to a fitness plan can positively impact your mood and overall wellbeing. Fitness is a journey, and prioritizing your health doesn’t have to be a chore.
Developing and sticking to a fitness plan will keep you looking forward to living a healthy, happy life.
Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, and I will earn a commission if you purchase through these links. Please note that I’ve linked to these products purely because I recommend them and they are from companies I trust. There is no additional cost to you.