Choosing to begin a walking program requires discipline, will power, and sometimes overcoming discomfort, particularly in the initial stages of the program. Lack of motivation can happen to the best of us. There will always be days when it is difficult to take those first steps out the door. Perhaps you are pressed for time, or the weather is cold and rainy. Perhaps you just don't feel like it. In most cases, try to reme mber that you'll almost always feel better once you get started into your workout. Think about how good you will feel after completing your walk; usually you feel better and are glad that you finally managed to struggle out the door. Make an Appointment with Yourself The key to becoming a regular exerciser is to build your workout into your daily routine. Make your workout a habit. Choose a time that works best for you, and try to stick with it. Maybe you like to get up and go first thing in the morning when you wake up, or find that you can clear your head a little by taking a break at lunch time.Just remember, that the longer you postpone your workout in the day, the more reasons you seem to be able to come up with NOT going out for your walk! No matter what time works best for you, pull out your scheduler and pencil in an hour-long appointment with yourself. Better yet, make an appointment to meet someone else to walk with. If your exercise partner is waiting on you at the street corner, you will be more likely to keep the appointment.
Sometimes you may need a little inspiration to get yourself motivated. Listen to some up-
tempo music, read something uplifting, think about being out in your favorite running/walking area - the beach, a beautiful forest. If you are still feeling apathetic, it may be time for drastic action. Put on your workout gear, and tell yourself that you are only going to do half the scheduled workout. Once you get going, you may well find that you start to feel better and your full workout can be accomplished without difficulty.
Seek Out Variety
You may find walking around your neighborhood sufficiently rewarding in the beginning, but over time the experience may pale. When that happen s, it's time to change your circumstances. Find a different place to walk. Go exploring. Go to the beach, a park, go to the country, take your dog with you. Remind Yourself that it Will Get Easier The further you go in your walking program, the easier it gets. You need to get through the initial phases where you are thinking about your feet, your breathing or how you are never going to get through the workout. If you do manage to push yourself into doing your training when you just don't feel like it - over time you will begin to feel good about being able to take on apathy and inertia and win.
Listen to Your Body
Sometimes you should listen to your body and not head out for your walk. If you're sick with the flu or a respiratory infection, take a day (or two) off. If you're sick, subjecting yourself to additional stress will only make you feel worse and might lead to injury or more serious illness. Give yourself a chance to recover, and then start back with the program.
Have a Positive Attitude
Negative self-talk tends to lead to negative result s. If you are having trouble following the
walking schedule, instead of thinking of yourself as a failure, tell yourself that you WILL
complete the program, and BELIEVE it!!
"Our lives are not determined by what happens to us , but how we react to what happens; not by what life brings to us, but by the attitude we bring to life. A positive attitude causes a chain reaction of positive thoughts, events, and outcomes. It is a catalyst ... a spark that creates extraordinary results."
© SportMedBC 2008