Staying motivated with your fitness regime

Many people who engage in an exercise routine find themselves ‘falling off the bandwagon’ at some point or another. Some of these budding enthusiasts start their exercise regime with a seemingly unquenchable desire that simply fizzles out sooner or later.

If you’re having trouble sticking to an exercise regime, here’s some simple tips to help you along.

1. Goal setting can be dangerous
This is especially so when you set unrealistic expectations of yourself. It is unhealthy to model your physique after picture-perfect models. Do not base your ideal physical conditions on that of others. Besides, many of those pictures are achieved using make-up, photographic tricks and Photoshop. It is also common for models to go for plastic surgery or take steroids.

Also, do not set difficult goals which are difficult to achieve. Aiming to lose 5 pounds every week is not only difficult, it’s also bad for most people because there’s a higher chance of muscle and bone density loss through extraneous aerobic activity.

The result? The decrease in muscle mass makes you more injury prone, and when you do suffer an injury, there’s a higher possibility of bone fracture or breakage. Remember, your muscles are there to help you, they stabilize your body and make you injury resistant.

2. Find enjoyment in your routine
This usually happens after you fail to meet your goals. Despite your efforts, what you’re doing doesn’t seem to work, and you get depressed.

If you want to stick to a health and fitness plan, you should enjoy what you are doing. Exercise should never feel like ‘work’. You should enjoy it and look forward to it.
Treating exercise as a ‘chore’ is one of the most detrimental mentalities you can adopt.

Enjoy what you’re doing, if you don’t, try doing something else. But most importantly, find an activity that you enjoy.

3. Don’t expect immediate results
Sometimes, I’d find a ’99-pound weakling’ who’d check out his biceps after performing a set of preacher curls, expecting his mosquito-bite-sized biceps on his spaghetti strand arms to expand like a hot-air balloon.

Other times I’d see someone weighing themselves after an intense session of cardio work, seemingly expecting an immediate 10 pound drop in weight.

It’s no coincidence that these are the people who always fail to achieve results. It is demoralizing to expect immediate results and receive none. If you are constantly looking for results, stop!

Most fitness goals require a long-term commitment. I’d advise against weighing yourself, or looking at yourself naked for 3 months. Do not critique your body during this important transitional period.

Being self-conscious is the best way to deride a fledgling fitness plan. But should your routine fail to achieve results after a reasonable amount of time, then perhaps it’s time to shake things up.

The lack of motivation is a common problem that all fitness enthusiasts have encountered at some point or another. As long as you remember to develop a healthy body image, concentrate on where you’re going instead of where you are, and enjoy yourself during your fitness journey, you should find yourself motivated for the long haul.

Remember; always consult your doctor or physician before embarking on any exercise or fitness regime!

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About Dedrick Koh

Dedrick Koh is a Social Media and Communications Specialist at Nanyang Polytechnic. He has a Bachelors (Murdoch) and Diploma (Ngee Ann Polytechnic) in Mass Communication. Dedrick is a communications professional and a highly skilled classical guitarist. As a communications professional, he has worked on brands like Coca Cola, DHL, Nokia, Nestle, the Health Promotion Board, the Economic Development Board of Singapore and the President Challenge. He gave private classical guitar during his polytechnic and undergraduate studies to put himself through school. He has succesfully prepared students for ABRSM and Trinity exams and was previously an instructor cum assistant conductor at Ngee Ann Polytechnic Strings under Alex Abisheganaden .