September’s a great month to… get back into the exercise habit.
In theory, summer is a great time to exercise. But while you may have planned lots of sunset runs along the beach, life (often in the form of kids, travel and endless piles of holiday laundry) has a way of meddling with our best intentions.
With its associations of knuckling back down to work, September’s a great time to get back into the swing of things again. But how do we make sure we stick to our workout plans so that we’re feeling fit by the time Christmas rolls around?
Personal trainer to the stars, Christina Howells, can help. She’s the co-founder of the fitness programme, That Girl London, and believes that when it comes to starting an autumn exercise routine, consistency is the key to success. Here’s her advice on finding a workout that sticks this September. Over to Christina...
We all know exercise is good for us. But if you’ve let things slide over the summer months, you’re not alone. Time just seems to fly by and before you know it, autumn’s here and you’ve done nothing. Sound familiar? These tips will help get you started again.
Find your ‘why’
Whether or not you restart (or just start!) an exercise programme in September is your choice, but look at it this way. The way your body will move, look and feel at Christmas will be the result of the choice you make NOW. Think of September as your opportunity to make changes that will reflect in your health and how you feel over the festive season.
Consistency is key
The most important factor in any exercise programme is consistency. To have any meaningful benefit, exercise has to become a habit - a part of your daily life. Until you commit to it fully there will always be hesitancy, the option to change your mind. If we don’t fully commit ourselves then we won’t really ever move forwards.
Discover your match made in workout heaven
The best workout is the one you’ll actually do. Choosing activities you enjoy and surroundings you feel happy in can have a huge impact on your adherence to any exercise plan. Finding something you actually look forward to doing will let you enjoy the process, so you’re not just focusing on the outcome.
Try something new
Your dream workout could be waiting for you, but how do you know unless you actively go looking for it? If you’ve not managed to find an exercise plan you can stick to in the past, you may need to shake things up a bit. September’s a great month to get stuck into something new, with many adult education colleges offering taster courses in everything from badminton and dance, to yoga and tai chi.
It’s a date
Booking an appointment with yourself is, in my opinion, the key to making your autumn exercise routine work. This means ruling your diary rather than letting your diary rule you. So go get your calendar, turn to September and start booking in your exercise appointments for the whole month and beyond. Think of these appointments as non-negotiable. After all there’s nothing more important than your future wellbeing and health.
Every small change you make to your weekly workout routine this September will have a big impact on how you look and feel by the time winter comes around. But the key to making this the year exercise finally sticks is to enjoy the process. Instead of just focusing on the endpoint, why not make this autumn the time you learn new skills? In fact I would challenge, is there ever an endpoint when it comes to your health and wellbeing?