1-Realize how important exercise is to your health as well as your appearance.
Quite often we begin an exercise program to look better and that’s fine but we need to realize that if we want optimum health, we must get some exercise. “For substantial health benefits, adults should do at least 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) to 300 minutes (5 hours) a week of moderate-intensity, or 75 minutes (1 hour and 15 minutes) to 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, or an equivalent combination.” (1) Consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program.
2-Realize how important YOU are.
No one can take your place in the World. Whether there are a lot of people who depend on you or you live alone, you are unique and you have gifts and callings that only you can use. Realize your value. If you provide care for others, you can’t continue to do that if your health fails. Take care of yourself.
3-Make proper arrangements for your exercise.
Decide what you will do, when, where and how you will get there. Personally, I love working out at home because it’s quick and easy. I lift heavy weights because I want the strength and appearance that comes with it. When I first began, David told me to commit to four days every week and consider it like my job. I have done just that. I know exactly when, where and what I will do and I am consistent. Consistency is very important to see results. While I like to swim, it’s too time consuming and that’s not the look that I want, so decide what works for you and do it.
4-Buy the clothes!
Buy a good pair of shoes that are designed for your activity. Ladies, buy a good sports bra. Nothing is as disruptive to an exercise program as breasts with a mind of their own. If feeling stylish and pretty is important to you in a public gym, buy the outfit even if you have to wash the same one every night and wear it again the next day. Guys, if you want to run, buy an athletic supporter. These seemingly frivolous details will make all the difference in the world in your willingness to continue your program.
5-Arrange your schedule to prioritize exercise.
When you have a lot of responsibilities, unless you pencil in exercise as a top priority, it will fall to the bottom of the list and not get done. We teach “Make your world small.” Cut out superfluous activities and negative people, who do not benefit you, to make time for exercise. If you don’t seem to be able to find 30-45 minutes most days to work out, you definitely need to reprioritize your life.
6-Be willing to change your chosen activity.
Regardless of how much you’ve talked about “what you do” or what arrangements you have made, if you decide that you don’t like that activity, change it! If you hate it or it’s almost impossible to work into your life, you won’t keep doing it. Be proactive and find an activity that you will do.
7-Avoid the neighsayers!
Occasionally someone will look at me with insincere concern in their eyes and say. “Why do you do that to yourself?” in reference to my weight training. Well, the obvious answer is “I want to be strong…and I like the look.” It shuts them up. The truth is, they don’t have the commitment to do anything consistently and they resent me doing it. Avoid these people. They do not have your best interest at heart.
8-Associate with like-minded people.
Sometimes that’s hard to do in our lethargic society, so seek out online information like us. If you trim away the negative people and firmly establish your identity as a health-minded individual, eventually other people who think similarly will sift into your life. It’s a process but it will happen and it’s well worth the wait. When you talk to these people, they understand why you do what you do.
As you make progress and stick to your workout schedule, reward yourself with NON-FOOD rewards. I occasionally buy a new piece of workout equipment or new workout clothes. The equipment is awesome and the new clothes mark progress in a very special way. When I first began heavy lifting, booty shorts were not my favorite thing. Now, I wear them every workout. They represent 2 1/2 years of hard work. Update your wardrobe to showcase your hard earned progress. It will motivate you to keep going.
Make your workouts non-negotiable. I once had an abusive family member who hated for me to be strong. There was a reason for that. As my physical strength increased, my mental and emotional strength followed. As a result, I left that abusive relationship. You may have good people in your life who simply don’t want to give up time with you and sometimes they want to commandeer your time. My grandmother hated for me to exercise because she wanted me doing stuff for her. She loved me and I loved her but exercise was a bone of contention between us. I still worked out. She is gone now and I have never regretted a single workout.
You are the only one who can control your time.
Use it wisely.