8 TIPS FOR EXERCISE ADHERANCE
1) ASK YOURSELF- WHY DO YOU WANT TO START EXERCISING?
Many people start an exercise program but in a couple of months will end up giving up. Many just view exercise as a chore and it will eventually go by the wayside.
For long term adherence for exercise it is important to find activities or exercise programs that you find more pleasurable.
It is suggested that exercisers who are intrinsically motivated experience more positive effects and better adherence than those who are extrinsically motivated (ACSM).
Intrinsically motivated exercisers do so for the satisfaction gained from engaging in the activity itself; in other words, they exercise for the challenge, to gain or learn skills, or to have fun.
Extrinsically motivated exercisers do so as a means to an end; they exercise simply to improve their appearance or because of pressure from someone else.
The proper reason behind exercising can act as powerful and long-lasting fuel. This is why setting goals and targets can be a good idea, doing exercise with friends or other like-minded people or doing things that make you feel good. If starting out there is no harm in experimenting. See what things you enjoy and what you respond well to.
2) START AT YOUR LEVEL
You don’t have to have an elaborate exercise program to get results. Get a general idea of your current fitness level and take it from there. A great way to help motivate and to help with adherence is measuring your progress (again this doesn’t have to be elaborate).
You can do this in ways such as assessing your weight and waist recordings or a body composition recording. Assess your aerobic and /or muscular fitness (use heart rate monitors, take your pulse before and after, how many push ups can you do at once. Look at where you are now and where you want to go. A good indicator of a quality workout is goal achievement and progress. Everyone has to make a start somewhere
3. FIGURE OUT WHAT YOU WANT TO DO AND HOW YOU WILL GET STARTED-
Identify the exercise programs and or activities that you feel will help you reach the fitness levels you want. Again I would advise not to choose something that doesn’t interest you or you find a chore to do.
You don’t want to just randomly start exercising, look for something that suits you. If you like the social aspect you could look for a sports team, try martial arts, join classes (spin, aerobics, Metafit, yoga, Pilates, dance etc.), find a gym buddy.
If you prefer something more private you could join a gym, do weight training, hire a personal trainer or go running, cycling etc.
Find out class times, suitable clothing or any equipment that you many need to get started. You will find it easier and more comfortable if you have the right clothing and equipment. If not sure ask someone who already does the activity, enquire at your local gym or invest in a personal trainer. Many gyms also do program designs and inductions for free.
4. DEVELPOP A ROUTINE THAT IS REALISTIC AND FITS