How To Get Your Rear In Gear
Sometimes it's difficult to get motivated about working out. According to the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, at least 50 percent of U.S. adults do not get enough physical activity for health benefits – which they define as 30 minutes a day on five or more days a week.
Tips and Tricks
So, whether for resistance training or a cardio workout, how do you get yourself to the club? Fitness Manager Michael Prezioso suggests some ways to get motivated:
- Buy an outfit that you aspire to get into, perhaps even in a smaller size.
- Hit the gym before heading home from work, "otherwise that couch starts to look pretty good."
- Find an accountability partner. "I run with a friend three times a week – and many times I probably wouldn't go if he wasn't there."
- Write down your goal and then tell someone about it. Again, accountability!
- Exercise for two straight weeks until it becomes a habit.
- Start with small, realistic goals.
Those tips can help you get started. Ultimately, the rewards of weight loss or maintenance and improved health can motivate you to exercise regularly. One of Prezioso's clients was determined to lose at least 50 pounds in six months – to look great for a cruise. She committed to meeting with him two to three times per week and doing cardio workouts on her own five times per week. She exceeded her goal by losing 62 pounds before the cruise. When she returned, she set other goals: to lose 100 pounds total and run a 5k*. "Another client started working out regularly in order to stay healthy for his son," says Prezioso. "His wife recently passed away and he was overweight." Whatever the goal, it helps to have someone to urge you on, such as a workout partner or personal trainer.
*Results not typical.
What separates the people who forget their New Year's resolutions by February from those who keep a fitness routine? "Planning is important," says Prezioso. "You need to schedule exercise into your calendar, make an appointment with the treadmill." Aside from discipline, though, he insists that those who stick with it eventually become hooked on exercise. "It's not a drug, but you get a great feeling. You get a rush when you increase your weight on a bench press and you also feel better and have more energy." He says that dedicated exercisers feel like they're missing something when they can't work out. They enjoy the social aspect of picking up a basketball game, joining a group exercise class. "I see regular attendees saying 'hi' to others; they get to know everybody at the gym and it becomes a social hour."
Enjoy What You Do
According to the American Heart Association, if you want to make physical activity a regular way of life, you should experiment until you find out an exercise program that's suited to you: "Think about whether you like to exercise alone or with other people, outside or inside, what time of day is best and what kind of exercise you most enjoy doing." Find a group exercise class at 24 Hour Fitness that you really like:
- Water aerobics classes
- Mind/body classes such as Yoga or Pilates
- Cardiovascular classes such as 24Cycle®, 24Dance™ or Zumba®
- Core stability and strength classes such as 24Lift™
If time is an issue, many 24 Hour Fitness clubs feature an Xpress Zone®, a 30-minute circuit workout that incorporates strength training and cardio. And if you're a busy parent, take advantage of Kids' Club babysitting while you work out.
Michael Prezioso is the Fitness Manager at our Southlake Sport location in Southlake, TX. He is also a Certified Personal Trainer and has a B.S. degree in Exercise and Sport Science.
Find out more about group exercise Classes at 24 Hour Fitness.
Find out more about the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports
Visit the American Heart Association web site.
This information and other information on this site is intended for general reference purposes only and is not intended to address specific medical conditions. This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice or a medical exam. Prior to participating in any exercise program or activity, you should seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional. No information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any medical condition.