Keeping fit: a question of perseverance

When you’ve been running around every which way – work, dinner, hockey, piano lessons, homework, cleaning – it’s difficult to motivate yourself to stay in shape. You’re exhausted. There’s a good hockey game on TV. Any excuse will do!

Yet we know that physical activity is essential for good physical and mental health. Its benefits are known. It helps you maintain a healthy weight, reduce stress and prevent problems such as hypertension and heart disease.

We are always full of good intentions, but how can we avoid throwing in the towel?

Here are five tips to keep you going:

  1. Train with a friend: Training with a friend is a lot more fun. You can encourage each other, share advice or just chat about your plans for the weekend. The important thing is to make the experience enjoyable. And of course, when someone is counting on you, it’s much harder to say no.
  2. Use technology: The Internet offers a wide variety of workout videos on everything from yoga to boot camps. Whether you’re in your room, basement or cottage, you will always have a personal trainer at your fingertips, and it’s free. You can also download an app to your smartphone to track your progress and get ideas for exercises.
  3. Set easy goals: You don’t have to become a professional athlete. Start off at your own pace and then focus on your success. Rome wasn’t built in a day!
  4. Variety is the spice of life: Don’t limit yourself to one activity. You can swim, play volleyball or walk your dog. Whatever you do, the important thing is to vary your activities.
  5. Change your approach: Think “feel good” instead of “look good.” You will feel the difference immediately because exercise releases endorphins that give you a sense of well-being. It will keep you motivated.