Everyone has to start somewhere. So what's the best way to get started with cardio if it's been a while (or ever) since you've worked out? And how can you set achievable cardio goals?
5 Tips to Creating a Lasting Fitness Routine
Taking a calculated approach when setting fitness goals will ensure long-term habits. It may seem counterintuitive to start small, but remember that you want to set yourself up for success not burnout or injury. Use these five tips to create a lasting fitness routine.
Choose an activity you enjoy. The best workout for you is an activity you’ll actually do, not one you think you should do. Hate biking? That's OK! Forcing yourself into a workout you dislike almost ensures failed fitness goals. If an activity isn’t working, give yourself permission to stop and try something new.
Have a plan. Know exactly what you're doing ahead of time. You’re never going to fall into a regular cardio routine without a plan. Aim for two or three sessions per week, with a rest day in between, just to get a feel for how your body (and mind) responds to exercise. Even something as simple as laying out your workout gear the night before can help your fitness goals become healthy habits.
Buddy up. Having a fitness buddy provides support, accountability, motivation, and even a little healthy competition. If you’re dragging yourself to the gym after work, it’s easy to talk yourself out of it - less so if you have a friend waiting for you.
Just show up. For the first few weeks, simply focus on showing up for your workouts and creating a habit of working out. You’ll have plenty of time to work on your speed and distance down the road.
Sign Up for a Competition. There’s nothing like a commitment to get yourself moving. By signing up for a 5k you’ll have more than just a number on the scale to keep you motivated.
Remember, everyone needs to start somewhere and setbacks completely fine (even expected!).
Avoid comparing yourself to others, be patient with what you can accomplish, and realize that it takes time (21 days, in fact!) for an activity to become a habit. Just don’t give up!
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