Ways to Motivate Oneself to Exercise for a Healthier Life
Exercising our body is very important in maintaining physical health particularly in regulating our digestive system, development of healthy bones (especially from an early age), strengthening our immune system and promotes overall well-being in general. With regular exercise you may also notice your skin will glow more and your eczema will occur less frequently as the blood flows through the entire body (specifically wherever the muscle is active) rather than just concentrating on your heart. Make sure to watch my video at the end of this article on the benefits of exercise on Eczema.
But as our busy lifestyle focuses our attention to work and other activities that gives us stress, not to mention the foods that we eat which most of the time are not healthy, our body tends to degrade which decreases our physical health and exposing us to various diseases. Study shows that 17% of heart disease and diabetes cases have been contributed to lack of exercise.
You may be convinced of the positive effects of exercise, but for most of us, doing it is easier said than done. Here are some ways to motivate you to exercise and have a good physical health:
1. Start today
If a lazy person is persuaded to exercise, the first thing that person will usually say is “Ok but I will start tomorrow”. Explain to that person that starting today is way much better than tomorrow. If you start right away, you will instantly realize, as the sweat glides down to your skin, that you are really burning the fats that makes your body heavy.
2. Sustaining is the key word
Congratulations on leaving your couch on the first day but to maximize the health benefits of exercise, sustaining this physical activity is very important. Let us say you started exercising once a week, say on Sundays. Make sure to maintain that regimen and if possible increase the frequency or duration of your exercise.
You can start by making it twice a week, then afterwards thrice a week and so on. If you prefer to do on certain days, increasing the duration from let’s say 20 to 30 minutes of at least moderate physical activity is a good option as well. You will just realize that you’re doing it every day setting aside that you will smell good compared to that funny couch odor.
3. Enjoy by playing a sport or any fun activity
If you happen to fall in love with running, then elevate your passion by signing up in a short distance race like 3 kilometers. Most of us love an afternoon bike, so why not try the sport of cycling or if you’re a beach lover, then try swimming. Who knows?
If you learn to love these sports, then you can start joining any organized triathlon locally. Just be reminded that most physical sports require a ballistic stretching exercise before playing.
For many years I’ve always wanted to learn any type of marital arts. One day last year, I decided to try out Muay Thai (kickboxing) and I loved it! Since then, I go as often as possible and take pride in it as I am always striving to be the best and enjoy learning from each person I bump fists with!
4. Meet new friends
As you almost forget about your couch and go outdoors, it is inevitable that you will meet new friends. This new friendship allows you to compare different exercise regimens and share experiences not just in sports but also in daily life. This will ultimately lead you to the feeling of belongingness to a group, giving you a more positive look in life.
Personally, even though I am half introvert, I love meeting different people who have the same goals and it adds to your social health… part of the 6 dimensions of health!
5. Exercise at work
Too much outdoors? Let us bring the setting back to your office where the environment is usually busy and hectic. Imagine that you are now a physically fit person and not a couch potato anymore. Here you are again sitting down most of time during work. We spend most of our time in front of a computer while sitting down until our back aches. A box can be a solution by placing it under your monitor or perhaps request for an elevated table. This way, you are standing while working where you have the tendency to stretch out your muscles and joints.
If you cannot avoid sitting down while working, try standing up and stretch out that muscle once in a while as this will give you better blood circulation thereby giving you energy to work. Certain workplaces possess an interesting invention where a workstation is placed on top of treadmill, forcing the worker to stand and walk at a steady place while he/she works on computer. Instead of treadmills, some use a bicycle OR you may use a desk cycle underneath your desk to keep your blood flowing through the legs. The downside to some of these is that they are very expensive and not every company can afford it.
Too much of a good thing?
As with other aspects in life, too much of something is bad. Same with exercise, too much can be harmful. Extreme and intense exercise can cause stroke and other cardiovascular problems. Understand this usually applies to marathoners and extreme athletes who do it for competitive reasons other than health. It is a bit shocking to most of us who are told that exercise is good for the heart therefore reducing cardiovascular diseases prolonging life span.
A small group of cardiologists believe that an excess of exercise will damage the heart. The key here is that you want to keep it moderately while keeping the work-life balance. Now that you are motivated to exercise and may be on your way in becoming a fitness guru, it is now your turn to motivate others to leave that lazy, couch-based life, pump those muscles and live a healthy life.