So you want to start working out and getting in shape, but where do you start? That can feel like the biggest hurdle, but it doesn’t have to be. Getting into a fitness routine can be intimidating, especially if you’re going to an unfamiliar gym or trying a new class, but these tips from trainer Louise Green can ease your fears and help exercise become a habit you can stick with.
- Pick an official start date - It needs to be at least three days away, but a week out is better. That gives you enough time to line everything up before starting. Once you pick a date, schedule it on the calendar and treat it as concretely as a work meeting.
- Spend some time figuring out why you want to start exercising - What’s your motivation? If you don’t know, your enthusiasm may not last, so think about the reasons you want to pursue fitness and what your goals with it are.
- Make a list of things you’ll need for your first workout - Preparation is key here, not having what you need may lead you to bail on working out and that’s no good. Think about the sneakers or sports bra you’ll need for exercising and what you’ll do with your keys during your workout. Focus on the little details so you’re more likely to reach your goals.
- Visualize what your new routine will look like and how it’ll make you feel - This can help ease your fears about trying something new and it helps mentally prepare you for what’s coming so when you actually do it, it feels less scary.
- Plan your workouts around what makes you feel most motivated and energized - Whether you’re an early bird or a night owl, figure out when you’ll perform best and go with it so you’ll have the best outcome.
- Create a way to stay accountable - Some find working out with a friend keeps them honest and gives them a reason not to skip a session. Others work best with a reward system or with tracking workouts in an app. Figure out what keeps you going and stick to it.
- Reframe what it means to be successful - Celebrate your accomplishments to help keep you motivated and don’t wait until you’ve met all your goals to do it. Recognize the small successes along the way to help you stick to your commitment. And be proud of yourself, you got this.