As someone who has coached thousands of military recruits prepare for military basic training, I have found that the hardest part of getting in shape isn’t the actual workout itself; it is finding time to do the workout.Any manager of any gym will tell you that the majority of people who sign up for a gym membership rarely return after 6 weeks. There are many reasons for starting a workout routine then have it fizzle after just a few weeks. Most people will tell you it is a time constraint to go to the gym. I find that to simply be an excuse though. In today’s society we are all busy; most of us have jobs, a family, pets and other responsibilities.
There are four main tips I can offer you that, if followed, will guarantee that you will stick to your next fitness regimen.
1. Make it a Priority – The reason you don’t stick to a fitness plan is because it is not a priority for you. What if I told you that every time you go to the gym you extend your life on this planet? What if I told you every time you go to the gym you will feel better, look better and act more confident. Those reasons alone should get you to turn off the latest Jersey Shore episode and drive to the gym. I would recommend writing down your daily priorities and see where the aforementioned benefits rank in importance.
2. Make a Time – This tip is simple and can be hard on your wallet if broken. Simply make a time that you will go to the gym. You shouldn’t do this day-by-day or even week-by-week. Monday through Friday you should commit to being at the gym the same time every day, your weekend times can be different. No, you don’t have to work out every day, but you should schedule a time every single day whether you plan on hitting the gym or not. Why? Because sometimes the unexpected happens and even if you plan on going to the gym, you just can’t make it. So if your current regimen calls for a Monday, Wednesday and Friday workout and you missed Wednesdays workout, don’t worry, you have already scheduled yourself for the gym on Thursday.
3. Have a Plan – Many times I see people at the gym with a notebook and pen, logging every set they perform. This is not only motivational, because it will chart your improvement, but logging your progress via a workout plan has been proven to increase the chances you will see that plan through to the end.
4. Grab a Buddy – Having a workout partner is beneficial on so many levels, especially when trying to stick to a workout regimen. Perhaps a coworker can meet you before or after work, or a spouse or family member has the same fitness goals as you. Whatever the case, working out together will force you to show up for your gym appointments more because you don’t want to let your buddy down.
I hope the above tips will help you be happier and healthier than ever before.
SGT Michael Volkin is the author of The Ultimate Basic Training Guidebook, which helps recruits prepare for military basic training.
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