Here are some tips for how you can begin to build fitness habits by starting small
1. Set specific goals - Having a resolution to exercise is just the starting point. It’s helpful to have specific goals and then make an actionable plan. “Be specific about when you will do it: Where will you do it? How will you get there?”
2. Find your ‘why’ - the first thing that you need to do is think about your history with exercise and identify whether your approach has been working. Try finding a more meaningful “why,” such as focusing on the positive feelings you experience from an activity.
3. Avoid ‘all-or-nothing’ thinking - Rigidity and perfectionism are often the enemy to building an exercise habit.
4. Bundle your workout with something fun - Exercise can and should be fun, and people tend to repeat things they enjoy. You can make exercise more enjoyable through a technique call “temptation bundling.” Link exercise to activities that you enjoy. For example, binge a TV show while using the treadmill at the gym or join a gym with positive community and members.
5. Be patient. Habits take time. - It often takes months for habits to form in the gym, so remind yourself that you are trying to create a lifelong fitness habit. There’s huge variation across people, but on average, it isn’t something that happens just like overnight, or over a couple of weeks. You should also take comfort that habits are getting stronger over time even if it doesn’t feel like things are getting easier.
6. Motivate yourself with kindness - If you have trouble sticking to an exercise habit or routine, go easy on yourself. Your struggle may be because exercise feels like punishment, instead of something motivating. Practicing self-compassion — which means being kind to yourself — can actually help you achieve your goals.