There are hundreds of benefits of exercising, so having a workout routine shouldn’t be hard, right? But have you ever wondered how to create a workout routine and stick to it?
It is easier than you think! You just need the right steps to get you started, build momentum and see the results.
Want to know how to do it? Here are 12 easy ways to help you create the best workout routine and follow through no matter what!
1. Understand Your Why
Before you even start, you need to know why. You know that having a fitness routine helps with your physical and mental health. You will lose weight, tone your muscles and stay fit.
But those vague reasons won’t be enough to get you to the gym when it’s raining outside, or you had a stressful day. Sure, you know the benefits of exercising, but this is not enough.
So, why do you want to stick to your workout routine? What goals do you want to achieve?
The secret is that the more specific you are on your why the more motivated you will be to exercise. Don’t be afraid to explore the true meaning behind why you want to be fit or lose those unwanted pounds. Your why will keep you motivated and disciplined when you need it the most.
2. Accept You Won’t Feel Like It
You may ask why is it so hard to keep up with your training routine? There is no easy answer. Sometimes, you just won’t feel like it and that is ok.
There is great power in acceptance.
Accepting that sometimes you won’t have the motivation and will to exercise is alright. Give yourself some credit and accept that there will be moments when you won’t be able to stick to your workout routine.
Letting go of this all-or-nothing thinking will help you to persevere. You are not bad, and you are not a failure only because you don’t feel like exercising.
Be compassionate with yourself and accept the fact that on some days you won’t go to the gym. Don’t judge yourself.
3. Don’t Rely on Motivation
It would be great to feel motivated all the time, wouldn’t it? Unfortunately relying on motivation alone is a recipe for disaster.
There are two types of motivators: external and internal. As the name suggests, external motivators come from the outside. It could be your parents, your boss, or money that keeps you motivated. However, when they stop motivating you, you stop your workouts.
Internal motivators are coming from you, and they have more power. The main internal motivator is having a positive mindset.
Focusing on the best workout routine, being disciplined, and setting the right intentions are all part of having a positive mindset.
But don’t rely on motivation alone! Try some quick workouts, get motivated by others, and enjoy the benefit of some cardio at the same time.
4. Start Small
So how to create a workout routine? Simple, start small. Like when you were a baby.
Before you could walk, you had to learn how to crawl.
So, create your workout routine with this concept in mind. Rather than committing that you exercise for one hour, commit to 30 minutes. And once you master that, increase your duration.
Psychology 101 teaches us that when you start with big goals in mind, you get discouraged easier. Because you can’t see how you will get the outcome you want, you are more likely to give up.
Another reason to start small is that if you have not exercised for a while, and you start with an intense workout, you risk an injury. Your body may not be prepared for the intensity of the workout, and you may end up tearing a tendon, or a muscle.
If you get injured on the first day of your gym routine, you will need to take time to recover. It will make it that much harder to get back in.
5. Make It Right for You
There are many different fitness routines you can choose from, so which one is the best? Of course, it will depend on your goal in mind. Do you want to lose weight, tone your arms, or work on your abs?
You have a higher chance of sticking to your working routine if you chose a routine that is right for your body type. How to do it?
First, assess your fitness level. Are you a beginner, intermediate or advanced? What is the ultimate result that you want to get out of your workout?
And last, but not least, what exercises do you like? You may not like all the exercises that you put in your workout routine, but if you don’t like any of them, you won’t stick to them.
Look at other areas of your life. You most likely tend to do things you like doing. It’s human nature. You will look forward to a fitness routine if you like it.
6. Plan Ahead
Let’s face it. There will always be important work meetings, project deadlines, and extra curriculum activities for your kids to attend to. And lack of time quickly becomes an excuse to bail out of working out.
That is why you need to plan ahead when and for how long you will exercise.
Planning may not be your favorite fun activity, but the top productivity experts say the same thing: if you want to get things done, you have to schedule them! So, you need to apply this productivity tip to stick to your workout routine.
Dedicate five or ten minutes on a Sunday afternoon to look through your calendar to see what you have on that week. And plan your workouts when you know you will have the time.
Planning ahead also helps you carry through with what you said you would do. You may not realize it, but your brain has to make hundreds of decisions a day.
Scientists call it brain fatigue. It simply means that after a certain point in the day your brain is too tired to make rational decisions. This means that although you know you need to exercise, you won’t.
By scheduling when you will do your workout, you avoid making that choice on the day. It is going to be that much easier for you to follow through on your plans.
7. Repeat, Repeat, Repeat
If you truly want to get the results you must stay with your workout routine. This means you need to be consistent with it.
Sticking to your workout routine is nothing else than building a habit. It should be your second nature, like brushing teeth or driving a car. It just happens, you don’t need to think and convince yourself to do it.
Through repetition, you build new neuropathways, and you train your brain in a different way of thinking.
By staying consistent, you will soon see results. You will improve your cardiovascular health, you will strengthen your core muscles, and you will become stronger and fitter.
This will give you a boost in motivation and you will become more confident that you can get to your desired level of fitness. And after a while, you won’t even need to think that you have to exercise. You will just do it!
8. Celebrate Small Wins
Beginnings are always the hardest, that is why you need to be proud of how far you’ve come. Celebrating all wins, whether big or small, is important when you learn how to create a workout routine.
Sometimes some wins may be hard to see, especially if you want to lose several pounds but you can’t see it on the scale. Nevertheless, there may be small wins you can celebrate. For example, your core muscles are stronger, your balance improved, or you simply feel better.
To help you celebrate even the smallest of wins, track your progress. You can use a workout journal, or a workout app to monitor how many calories you burnt, or how much you run.
And when we are at it, celebrate! You most likely set goals when you started building your workout routine, so celebrating your milestones is important.
The reward should match the size of your milestone. You can honor yourself with some fun activewear, or a fancy dinner with friends.
Rewarding yourself for showing up and sticking with your training routine will keep you motivated. It can even give you a bit of a push to keep going.
Mixing up your fitness routine and trying something new can prevent you from boredom. There is nothing worse than being uninspired by your workout routine.
You may only swap some types of exercise, or you may try a new workout altogether! You may want to try something new and be a bit adventurous. If you always lift weights, try some cardio instead.
Trying different types of workouts will help you to exercise different muscle groups, ensuring you work out the entire body.
You don’t have to reinvent your entire gym routine but experimenting with different styles can be a good motivator. And if you hit a plateau, it could mean that you are ready to increase the duration or intensity of your workout.
If you decide to try a new workout or increase the intensity of your exercises, keep in mind the rule of baby steps. You have come so far, you don’t want to have an injury that would prevent you from succeeding.
10. Join a Community
Do you know the saying birds of a feather flock together? Joining like-minded people may be all you need to stick to your fitness routine.
You will get motivated, inspired, and empowered by your new family. Humans are social creatures and sharing your fitness struggles with others can help you to overcome them.
You also have the added level of accountability. It is much easier to talk yourself out of going to the gym than to tell your friend you won’t go, especially if they are already there.
Sometimes starting something new may feel scary and becoming a part of a community is going to make that first step much easier.
Joining a local gym, finding a workout buddy, and sharing the success of your fitness journey can decide your success.
11. Be Patient
Making a lasting change takes time. So, go easy on yourself. Learning how to create a workout routine and stick to it requires patience.
There will be moments when you will eat ice cream instead of a kale smoothie. And that is ok. Maybe that day you will exercise for five minutes instead of 30?
The fact that you skipped a session doesn’t mean you won’t reach your end goal. When you look at your gym routine as something fun, you will have fewer reasons to skip it.
Be patient with yourself and keep going. And stay away from comparing yourself and your progress with others.
As long as you keep going, and staying consistent, you are making progress. No matter how small. And remember, you will get better with each practice.
Taking time to rest is an essential part of any workout routine. Although it may look like you are losing momentum or staying behind while taking a rest, you actually do the opposite.
Overtraining your muscles may lead to fatigue or even an injury. A day of rest gives your body time to recover and your muscles to heal if need be.
You will be stronger and capable of more after you have a day or two of rest.
How to Create a Workout Routine
Are you ready to learn how to create a workout routine? Whether you want to lose some unwanted pounds, tone your body, or get fitter, those 12 steps will help you to follow through.
Starting small, staying consistent, and having some fun along the way will put you on a path to success.
And you don’t have to do it alone! You can find a workout buddy so join a community that supports and motivates you!