We all want to win, succeed, and kick goals with the things that we pursue in life. Exercise is no different. As a physiotherapist who has delivered in excess of 25,000 physiotherapy consultations, I have observed varying fitness and physical health profiles of my clients across the last 8 years.
As you would expect, those clients who have built regular exercise into their weekly routines tend to outperform those who have failed to do so, in terms of their physical health. I have come to recognise that there are common tips and tricks that the successful exerciser in life exhibits and utilises in their quest to stay physically healthy and in shape. I have summarised seven of the most common exercise tips that I have cited over my years of working as a physiotherapist below.
The 7 winning tips to succeed with exercise are:
1. See your health as an investment.
Entrepreneurs are good at calculating and thinking in terms of ROI. Our physical health is no different. We would all agree that it is an imprecise and foolish game to try and place a ROI on one’s pursuit of remaining physically healthy throughout life. As VISA would say – we would concur that optimal lifelong physical health is priceless. So in chasing your ROI with your business, be sure to not hamper the ROI on your physical health. Failing to do so can be a slippery slope that many unfit entrepreneurs have succumbed to.
2. Start small- build momentum.
Leaders and self-starters seem to always find a way to get things started. Exercise should be no different. Just make a start – any start. Don’t wait for things to be perfect – just start! As with most life endeavours there is a cumulative effect to investing small amounts of time into exercise over the long term. Exercise like money has a compounding effect. There is a cumulative value in what can at times feel like an unimportant daily routine. So take a small step today like taking the stairs instead of the lift or elevator, or choose water instead of Coke at lunch.
3. Diarise time to exercise.
Block off times for exercise in your diary and leave them there. Not even the seeminglymost urgent tasks should pull you from your date with moving your body. If it’s in your diary, there’s much greater likelihood of it happening.
4. Do something you enjoy.
I am amazed at how often people capitulate with their exercise routines because they have chosen something that they really don’t enjoy doing. If you don’t like to swim, don’t take up swimming in your lunch break. Likewise if you hate running, stay clear of the morning running trails. There have never been more options for fitness than in today’s fitness crazed marketplace. Find something you enjoy and the motivation follows.
5. Buddy up. Accountability is a powerful tool. It is far too easy to quit or not show up when you do not have a commitment to meet someone for a training session. The few with iron wills may succeed, but the vast majority of people will not succeed without an accountability partner in the form of a training partner. Even more powerful than a training partner can be engaging in a group that meets regularly at set times. You know the deal – be there rain, hail, or shine!
6. Measure your progress. In business we know that what gets measured gets improved. Well this same adage applies to our physical fitness and health. If you are able to measure your efforts, you are much more likely to progress in your abilities and as a result experience greater fitness and health. Biotech devices such as a FitBit and Garmin or similar GPS watches have revolutionised the data that the modern exerciser can now have access to both during and following an exercise session.
7. Fight the urgent. It’s so easy to let those urgent and highly important tasks drag us away from the important but not urgent tasks of our days or weeks. Such important but not urgent tasks can include our exercise sessions. I encourage you to think long term when it comes to your physical health and your life. By taking this longer term perspective, the likelihood of you making wise decisions when competing tasks emerge will be heightened.
So, looks like you’d better go exercise!