Active Seniors

Tips to beginning and sticking to an exercise program

It can be difficult to commit to starting an exercise program. We all know how great exercising is for us but can struggle to take that first step, it is all too easy to let distractions get in the way. Unless we make the effort it isn’t possible to reap the benefits – here are 5 tips to help with motivation for your next fitness program.

Make it safe

As we get older our health naturally starts to deteriorate and conditions arise such as high blood pressure and painful osteoarthritis. Fear of exacerbating pain or existing issues is a common reason to delay an exercise program. Remember that a properly designed exercise program tailored to your needs will take into account your existing conditions and health issues and thus be safe. Guidance and direction on the do’s and don’ts for your conditions and tailored exercises can be provided by Exercise Physiologist to further enhance your exercise program. Starting slowly and progressing can also make a difference and ease you into an exercise program comfortably.

Realise it’s importance

To stick to an exercise program you have to realise the benefits that exercise has for you – believe us, there are a lot! Just have a look at the articles on this website. Exercise is often described as a ‘miracle drug’ as it works in controlling and decreasing the risk of developing many chronic diseases as well as physical and mental health more generally. Do your research and track your results to see the many benefits that your exercise program is having. Make it your choice The start of an exercise program is often at the direction of someone else – your doctor, partner or children are common examples. To help commit to your exercise program it helps to want to complete it yourself. Otherwise, it is all too easy to think of excuses. There are so many reasons that exercise can improve your life, wellbeing and make you happier, so no matter how it came about, make the exercise program your own!

Make it fun

Exercise doesn’t have to be a chore, there are many ways to make it fun. Complete activities that you enjoy, whether it be golf, bowls or tennis, lots of the activities that you are possibly already enjoying can be taken further and incorporated in your exercise program. Research shows that exercise in a group can also make it more enjoyable. Find a local walking or exercise group in your area or a friend to exercise with and your exercise will feel like a social outing rather than a chore.

Set realistic goals

Setting goals is a great way to stay motivated in an exercise program, but you need to remember the body doesn’t change overnight. Building strength, getting more flexibility and losing weight all take time. It is important to be realistic with your expectations. The changes you are seeking may not happen overnight, but they will happen and you’ll feel happier and healthier for it!

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