Staying motivated to exercise

Choosing to be more active is great, but once you start it’s important to keep it up. There are many different tips you can use to stay motivated.

Be active with others

A great way of finding the motivation to be active is to schedule in time with a friend, family member or colleague for physical activity. This can help make the activity something to look forward to.

Try going for a walk, jog or fast-paced walk with a friend or loved one, or even play football with your children a few evenings per week.

Join an exercise class or club

Think about a sport or activity you would like to try out and look for clubs or classes in your area. Most leisure centres and gyms hold regular classes which, once you sign up, should help keep you motivated to keep the activity up.

Some activity groups, particularly running and walking groups, can be free.

Do what you enjoy

Find activities that you enjoy. If you find you don’t enjoy walking or jogging try cycling or swimming instead.

Don’t think you have to find one activity and stick to it. Try sampling different activities or sports until you find something you like. If you become bored of it, move onto something else.

Being active doesn’t have to be a chore, you’re more likely to stick with it if you’re having fun.

Set goals

Once you have found an activity you enjoy, set yourself an achievable goal to work towards. For example, work towards swimming a certain number of lengths per visit to the pool, or try running a certain distance without stopping for a break each time. Once you achieve your goals, increase them to make sure you are continuously improving.

If you are looking to set more ambitious goals, find a charity run that you can work towards. You could also try a competitive sport that will motivate you to keep improving your performance.

Make physical activity part of your routine

Making physical activity part of your routine makes it more difficult to miss or forget. It can include scheduling time on certain days of the week to take part in a sport or attend and exercise class.

Building activity into your daily routine can also include much simpler things like taking the stairs instead of the lift at work each day or walking to the shops instead of taking the car.

Either way, adding small amounts of physical activity into your daily or weekly routine will bring health benefits

Last updated:
30 November 2022

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