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Is there something about the word “exercise” that makes you cringe a little? I completely understand.  So many people do. We all know we have to do it, and yet the moment we have an excuse not to, we chicken out. Then we get on the scale and feel bad for not doing it. It really is a vicious cycle.

But there is hope – We can learn to like exercising! I know it seems impossible, but even a few simple changes can help you get motivated and ready for your next workout. Here is a list of compiled ideas to get you moving:

Schedule it in– Put it in your schedule and treat it like any other appointment. This is your time. Don’t give it up for anything else.

Buy something cute  – Whether it be a new sweatshirt or tennis shoes or running pants, buy something that will make you feel good every time you put it on. It will help you feel good about yourself as you workout.

Good Music – Pick music that you like with a tempo that matches your VO2 Target Heart Rate.  If you consider that each song is around four minutes long, six or seven songs feels a lot better than 30 minutes. Good music will motivate you and can distract you to make your workout easier.

Switch up your workouts – Get out of the house a couple days a week. Dance, skate, play with the kids, try a workout DVD, do sports, walk with your best friend while you chat, find toddlers you can use for free-weights, try Zumba or yoga or water aerobics. You have so many options for your workouts; make sure you include the things you actually like to do!

Give yourself a purpose – Sometimes it’s hard to motivate yourself to run when nobody’s chasing you, or to lift heavy things that don’t need to be moved. Start training for a 5k, a triathlon or a road race. Give yourself a goal so you’re working towards something, and you’ll feel like you are accomplishing something much larger than just losing a couple pounds.

Be accountable – Work out with a friend, or find someone that you can report your workouts to. It’s easy to talk yourself out of your workout, but it’s harder to tell someone else why you backed out. Be ready to report how awesome your last workout was!

Just Do It! – You can talk about your workout plan until you’re blue in the face, but nothing is going to happen until you get up and actually DO IT! Sometimes we spend too much time thinking about how much we don’t want to work out that we end up missing the workout. So get up, get on the treadmill, get outside. You can do it!  Take that next small step to a happier, healthier life!

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