Committing to a workout plan is one thing. But actually sticking to it is something else altogether. Between work, family and all the rest, there are all kinds of ways your best-laid plans can turn south.
But if you find that you’re regularly putting off your workout because “something came up,” there may be something you can do about it.
Here are three reasons you can’t stick to a workout plan – and ways to work around them.
1. Your workout schedule doesn’t suit your lifestyle.
Timing is everything, they say, and they’re right! It’s hard to find enough hours in the dy when you have a job and a family and myriad obligations in between.
Conventional fitness wisdom tells us that we should be exercising for an hour at least four to six days a week if we’re trying to lose weight. And that doesn’t include time spent getting to and from the gym.
Trying to squeeze in that hour and change on an already packed calendar can be daunting, and it may be why you skip the gym more often than not.
Try this: Create a workout schedule that actually suits your life schedule.
Ask yourself how many days every week you can really work out, and how much time you have on those specific days. Then, prepare accordingly.
If you know you’re going to work out the next day, for example, then you could:
- Pack your gym bag so you have everything you need
- Pack a post-workout smoothie
- Think about your workout so you aren’t wandering aimlessly around the gym (and if that’s an issue itself, learn more about the benefits of a personal trainer)
2. You dread your workouts.
Working out should be challenging, but you shouldn’t out-and-out hate what you’re doing. Sure, squats may not be your favorite, but if you absolutely loathe them, there are other leg exercises out there.
It’s hard to muster enthusiasm for something you really don’t like doing. The good news is that there are lots of ways to work out. You just need to find what works for you.
We tend to jump into things without thinking it all the way through. If you don’t enjoy intense, drill-sergeant style training, maybe a boot camp isn’t for you. If you prefer one-on-on instruction, a group class may not suit your needs. Don’t be convinced just because your friend keeps raving about that “amazing class.” It’s worth investigation, but consider its value in the context of yourself.
Try this: Experiment to find things you enjoy enough to keep doing.
Lots of boutique gyms will let you try a class for free, and personal trainers, like those at Framework Personal Training here in Reno, will schedule a free consultation so you can make the right decision.
3. You rely on motivation to stick to your workout plan – and that’s it.
Motivation is an emotion, and that’s why you can’t maintain it all day, every day. When we rely on motivation alone to stick to our workouts, it will probably work for a little while. Maybe we joined a new gym, or we’re working on that “summer body,” or any of the other short-term reasons that we’re suddenly committed.
But unless we’re building in good habits to keep you going when motivation wanes – and it will – then we’re just setting ourselves up for failure.
Try this: Practice good habits during those motivated periods.
Here’s an interesting theory about habits. They have three parts:
- The cue: this sets your habit in motion (things like the alarm clock)
- The routine: these are the steps you take after being cued
- The reward: this is why you’re doing what you do
By understanding these elements, we’re able to take mindful action to develop good habits. Planning your workout, for example, and preparing now to avoid potential pitfalls, can become your habit. When you aren’t motivated on a given day, you’ll automatically fall back on your habit of preparing for the gym. Because it’s just what you do.
Try these tips to see if you can improve your fitness consistency.
And keep in mind that working with a personal trainer can actually eliminate these three commons reasons you can’t stick to a workout plan. If you’d like to learn more, contact us today.