Let's change our outlook on exercise. It doesn't have to be something we dread, or avoid. We can enjoy it. We can find something which we look forward to. We just need to find our groove.
What exercise can do for you
The most obvious benefit, and why many of us drag ourselves down to the gym, is to burn calories. If you're trying to lose weight, exercising will help you reach your goal more quickly. It's important to remember that if you are exercising alongside your weight loss plan, you should take measurements each week as you might not lose weight on the scales, as you're gaining muscle and changing your body shape.
There are many physical health benefits from regular exercise. If you are carrying excess weight, your cardiovascular system is having to work harder, causing strain on this part of your body. Other health risks such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes are reduced if you're more physically active.
Increasing your physical activity has huge benefits for mental health. Whether it's heading to a class with a friend, joining a local running club or even walking the dog with your kids, you're enriching yourself socially. Of course, any exercise will provide you with endorphins too, which boost your mood! Other factors associated with exercise such as improved health and confidence also contribute to helping our mental health.
How to enjoy exercise
1. Try lots of different things. There is something for everyone out there, so just explore what's out there and find something that fits into your lifestyle. Maybe it's ice skating, canoeing, rock climbing or even just hiking.
2. Make time each week and stick to it. Commit to scheduling time in for you to get out and exercise and remember that you'll feel better afterwards. You can even try adding a note in your diary with how you felt last time you exercised, to remind your future self.
3. Invite a friend. It's always more fun when you're with someone else. They can also hold you accountable on those days you're not feeling up to it and provide much needed motivation.
4. Buy some cool workout clothes. It doesn't have to cost you a fortune but investing in some well-fitting clobber can help you feel more confident and comfortable during physical exercise.