The folks on Instagram would have you believe that every workout is an absolute party. For most people, though, that's definitely not the case.
Whether you're stuck in a gym rut or can't bring yourself to drive to the gym and spend an hour going nowhere on the treadmill, these tips are for you. Listed below are five ways to make exercise more fun. Keep these in mind and you'll find that you actually enjoy getting stronger and healthier!
1. Get Outside
If you dread going to the gym, there's good news — you don't have to spend time in a windowless building with a bunch of sweaty people to get a good workout.
Exercising outside will give you a much better view and can also be better for your mental health. Research shows that outdoor workouts tend to make people feel happier, more engaged, and more energized.
Take a walk or hike or head out on a trail run to burn calories and enjoy the scenery. You can also head to a local park to do bodyweight resistance exercises like squats, push-ups, pull-ups, and lunges. It's easy and free!
2. Invest in New Equipment
Sometimes you just need a new piece of exercise equipment to motivate you to start working out again. This is especially true for people who prefer to utilize home workouts and have a limited number of tools available to them.
If you've been exclusively walking on the treadmill in your basement, try switching things up with some resistance bands for strength workouts. Or, if you do a lot of yoga and pilates, try incorporating a balance disk to challenge yourself and improve balance and core strength.
There are lots of options out there that won't break the bank. Adding a new piece of equipment may be just what you need to pull yourself out of your rut and get excited to get your sweat on.
3. Workout with a Friend
For most people, it's easier to stick to a workout routine when they have a friend to exercise with.
Research shows that you're more likely to stick to your workouts if you have a partner or workout in a group setting. Get your spouse involved in your fitness routine, or recruit a friend who also needs a little motivation boost.
You may also want to sign up for group classes at a local gym or fitness studio. You typically need to pay for these classes ahead of time, and the financial obligation combined with the group atmosphere will encourage you to show up and exercise, even if you're not feeling particularly motivated.
4. Find Sneaky Ways to Exercise
If you absolutely refuse to do a traditional workout, try tricking yourself into getting some exercise.
Remember that all kinds of movement are beneficial. If you spend an hour walking around while you shop for groceries, that counts (try parking further away from the store for some extra movement). An hour or two of housework is also beneficial, especially when you're doing chores like scrubbing the floors or clearing out your attic.
Schedule these kinds of activities regularly to help increase your overall calorie burn (and keep your house clean!).
You can also sneak in exercise while you watch TV. Try pairing your favorite shows with some treadmill walking, bodyweight exercises, or time on the stationary bike.
5. Take a Trip Down Memory Lane
What was your favorite activity when you were younger? Did you love to jump rope or play soccer? What's stopping you from doing those things now?
What if, instead of going to the gym, you joined an adult soccer team? All that time spent on the field is great exercise, and you'll get to do something you truly enjoy on a regular basis.
Look for leagues in your area and consider signing up. Or, just head out with your kids a few times a week to play in the backyard. You'll get to stay active while also spending quality time with loved ones!
Exercising doesn't have to be a chore. Give one of these five tips a try today and you'll start looking forward to your workouts!