6 tips to help you get more exercise and stay fit

You don't have to go to the gym to stay fit. These six simple tips will help you to incorporate more exercise into your life.

6 tips to help you get more exercise and stay fit

1. Set goals

  • Set and write down your goals.
  • Ask yourself these questions: How many times a week do I want to exercise? For how long? What length of time would I like to be exercising in a month? At six months?
  • With your doctor or physical therapist, set realistic goals that you know you can reach.

2. Keep track

  • Every time you exercise, mark a calendar on the refrigerator, noting what you did and for how long.
  • Keeping track helps you chart your progress. It's also encouraging to see how much you've accomplished.
  • Keeping track of your past behaviour can also help you set new goals.

3. Reward yourself

Give yourself weekly rewards, or even daily ones. For example:

  • Finished your first 15 minute walk? Treat yourself to an iced coffee.
  • Reached your weekly exercise goals? Call that faraway friend you miss.
  • Completed three weeks of half-hour swims? Get yourself a new swimsuit.

4. Strike the right balance

  • It's easy to get overambitious and push yourself too hard.
  • The problem is that your pain may worsen soon after, and you'll feel like giving up.
  • Go slowly and build gradually.

5. Build in variety

  • The enemy of exercise is boredom.
  • If you do the same thing, day in, day out, you'll get bored. Change where you walk and who you walk with.
  • Tired of walking? Do some yard work, play backyard badminton or hit the exercise bike.

Exercise is very much a matter of trial and error. But if you give it a go, you'll be well on your way to finding your groove — and a new you.

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