If you struggle to maintain an exercise program or find it hard to keep those resolutions to get or stay fit, maybe the problem is your mind rather than in your body. Sports psychologists are increasingly of the view that keeping fit is a state of mind as well as a physical objective.
Next time you are planning to go to the gym, or even just for brisk walk ask yourself why you exercise, what you are doing it for, what you hope to achieve. Be clear about your mental objectives, and your physical ones should become easier. Try the following steps to mental fitness:
• What are your reasons for exercise? Write them down one by one, in as much detail as possible, then review them thoroughly and ask yourself if you are being completely honest about your motivation.
• Set challenging but achievable goals, establish your ultimate goal, and then work back to the present, putting in short term, easier-to-achieve goals to achieve along the way. Put your goals into a timescale and have them in writing.
• Learn positive self-talk, everyone experiences times when they don’t want to exercise, but those who go ahead and do it anyway are those who have learned to counter negative self-talk with positive, persuasive arguments.
• When you are working out in the gym, swimming in the pool, or going for a walk, try to stay “in the moment” throughout the experience, instead of switching off completely, or thinking about other things.
• Mix things up and don’t get stuck in a rut have a sense of discovery and fun about exercise try many different forms.
• After your workout, take a moment to congratulate yourself, and reflect on what you’ve achieved.