When starting a new exercise regime, it can be difficult to stay motivated. That’s why we’ve teamed up with Nutritionist Emily Whitehead to come up with these 6 simple tips to help you get active and stay motivated.
1. Choose something you enjoy
You don’t have to run a marathon to become fit, why not choose a form of physical activity that you enjoy? This could be dancing, swimming, walking or whatever takes your fancy. You are more likely to stick to this and less likely to drop out. If you do find yourself becoming bored, why not try something new and different to keep your motivation elevated.
2. Start small
If you are new to exercise or haven’t exercised in a long time, try and aim for five to ten minutes to begin with. Start to increase the time each week or every two weeks, as you become fitter. Some people increase the time by five minutes each week. Before you know it, you’ll be hitting 30 minutes! Try listening to music to keep you motivated throughout.
3. Exercise with a friend
If you exercise with a friend, you can encourage each other. If you are a member of a gym, why not get help from a personal trainer or fitness instructor to write a specific exercise programme just for you, if your motivation is wavering or if you’re on a plateau and need variety.
4. Track your progress
Why not buy yourself a pedometer and write the number of steps each day in a journal? The Government recommends 10,000 steps each day, so try and aim for this.
5. Set achievable goals
Set goals that are personal to you and are a stepping stone towards greater achievements. Starting too high may lead to disappointments and feelings of discouragement. So, start small and once you have achieved them, reward yourself and set another goal.
6. Eat well
Why not kick start your levels by making sure that your diet is rich in B vitamins. The B vitamins are essential for helping the body release energy from carbohydrates, fats and proteins. Vitamin B12 is especially important as it has been proven to reduce tiredness and fatigue. Foods rich in B12 include liver, egg, turkey, trout, sardines and chicken or you could take a supplement.
Magnesium is required for over 300 enzymes in the body and a lack could contribute to low energy levels and fatigue. Stay away from refined foods, such as white bread, white pasta and sweets for example. These foods, raise your blood sugar levels quickly, followed by a drop. Stick to foods such as wholemeal bread, sweet potatoes and oats which help raise your blood sugar levels gradually and keeps you fuller for longer.