Spring Clean Your Fitness
If you’ve been following our blog for some time you’ll know that each September we hold our Spring Clean Your Life series.
Well this year we’re doing our own Spring Clean on our website, hence we’ve been a bit quiet on the blogging front. Of course, can still check out last year’s Spring Clean series (starting here with How to Declutter and Find Focus), and if spring cleaning your psychological wellbeing is your target this year why not try our FREE 14-day Wellbeing Challenge?
This spring we're also taking on the challenge to make changes to our physical health, specifically our fitness. After a winter of rainy weather, dark mornings and evenings, is it any wonder that our enthusiasm for exercising may have waned a tiny bit?
Why focus on fitness?
Well, there’s no shortage of research on the importance of exercise for our physical health, but increasingly the link between exercise and our psychological wellbeing is mounting up.
Consider the impact of feeling sluggish and low on energy on your ability to think, react rationally to stress, and on your interactions. In fact, exercise plays a role in managing stress and mood.
For a quick recap, head to this article on Why Exercise Matters for your Mental Health and Wellbeing.
Exercise: How to do a Spring Clean that works?
First up, let’s put some thought into those exercise programs that we've started but didn't sustain, and about those obstacles that stood in the way of us sticking to our plans.
The main thing to aim for is an exercise program that you can stick to in the longer term, and fits in with your routine and existing commitments. When you set these types of goals it increases the likelihood of your new exercise program lasting the distance.
Understand what obstacles stand in the way of sticking to your goals (e.g. a lack of time, lack of accountability) - whatever these obstacles are it’s helpful to anticipate them and plan accordingly.
Keen to find out more? Check out our blog post on How to Set Goals to Maintain Motivation and Stay on Track.
3 quick tips to help you with setting Spring Clean goals for fitness include:
1. Be clear about your motivation to exercise
Why are you exercising?
Is it to keep fit? To help manage stress levels or boost your mood?
Keep focused on your reason for exercising, and use it to shift your self-talk when motivation is low (e.g. “I really don’t feel like exercising now but I know it helps me feel less stressed; in the past when I’ve dragged myself to exercise I’ve felt so much better afterwards.”)
2. Set up a realistic exercise routine and commit to it
Why choose a realistic exercise routine that fits in with your lifestyle and interests?
Because something is more likely to succeed in the longer term when it holds your interest, seems within reach, and motivates you to keep going. By sticking with something over time, you're more likely to form an exercise habit.
So there's no point channeling your efforts into boot camp if you'd much rather be paddle boarding. Or, committing to hour-long jogs if it really is unlikely that you'll find the time to fit it into your routine on a regular basis, and a high intensity workout of a shorter duration may fit your lifestyle better.
Make it simple, make it fit.
3. Be accountable
Whether it’s answering to one friend with whom you exercise, being part of a structured group-based exercise plan, or setting up a team-based challenge at work to take a certain number of steps each day, being accountable can really help get you over the line when it comes to maintaining exercise.
So who will you be accountable to?
But it's all too hard...
Right, so if those 3 small steps aren’t simple enough to help you Spring Clean your Fitness, and you’re after a step-by-step approach, then we need to talk about two things:
1. If running or pilates are what you're in to then check out Front Runner Sports' courses. Their Fresh courses are female-focused and cater to all skill levels, and be sure to also head to their course calendar if you're training for specific running events (Darlington Half Marathon, HBF Run for a Reason, City to Surf).
2. Or, if just getting moving is more your focus then check out this FREE Exercise Jumpstart course by Dr Kevin Yong, GP and blogger over at Eat Move Chill. Dr Kev's Exercise Jumpstart course is a 12-part email course designed to get you moving, and over at his website he blogs about the importance of building up physical health to focus on the challenges of modern life.
So, what are you waiting for? Get moving!
Want more? You can connect with The Skill Collective in the following ways:
- Contact us to make an individual appointment to get started on making changes.
- Get access to our FREE resource library filled with exclusive tip-sheets on Wellbeing, Mental Health, and Performance that you won't find here on the blog
- Join our FREE 14-day Wellbeing Challenge. Tailored for busy lives we're talking wellbeing tips for better body, mind, and heart in just 15 minutes a day, delivered straight to your inbox.