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Exercise: How To Make It Stick!

Paige Shouse ACSM-HFS, CWPC February 13 th , 2013


• Review physical activity statistics • Discuss barriers to exercising • Six ways to make exercise a part of your life • How to get started with a program that works for you 2

Did you know…

• ______ % of people who start an exercise program abandon it within 3-6 months.



Did you know…

• ______ out of 10 Americans do not exercise regularly.



Did you know…

• In the US, how many deaths are attributed to a lack of physical activity every year? These deaths are thought to be caused by heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other conditions.



Did you know…

• How many minutes of exercise would you need to add 3 years to your life while decreasing your risk of cancer by 50%?

15 minutes per day


2008 Estimates of the Percentage of Adults Who Are Physically Inactive


What’s the problem?

• What We Know vs. What We Do • Information and education vs. behavior modification and environmental change • 6 months to change habits Benefits of Exercise 8

Overcoming the Objections

Excuse I don’t know enough about it.

I don’t like physical activity.

I’m not motivated.

I can’t make this change alone.

Counterpoint Talk to your doctor or a fitness professional, to learn more. You do not have to be an expert to change your habits. Forget the old notion that being physically active means playing football or lifting weights in a gym. You can be active in many ways, including dancing, walking, ice skating, gardening, or taking fun fitness classes. The list goes on and on! Explore options you never thought about, and stick with what you enjoy.

Think about your biggest reasons for being healthy. Think about these things when you want to quit. Also, try mixing things up to stay interested.

Recruit others to be active with you. Also, consider signing up for a fun exercise class, like salsa dancing. Get your family or coworkers on the bandwagon.

Overcoming the Objections

Excuse I’m not a morning person.

I just ate. Counterpoint Find a better time to exercise. Lunch time? After work? After dinner?

All the more reason to walk it off. After-dinner walks can be the best, especially with a family member. It costs too much.

It's too cold.

Start a walking group! Walk around the mall during off-peak hours, find a school track, or go to a local park. Exercise at home.

Dress warmly if you're walking or jogging outside. Most people work out at their homes or gyms, which are almost always heated.

Exercise early or late in the day, or exercise indoors.

It's too hot.

I would rather sit and relax.

The more you sit, the more you want to sit. Get going!

Overcoming the Objections

Excuse I'm too tired. The treadmill hurts my knees. I don't have the right shoes. It's dark outside when I come home from work.

I'm on vacation.

I only have 20 minutes.

Counterpoint Exercise is the best “energy shot”! You will feel much better when you're done.

If you have pain, swimming or biking are better options.

Sneakers don’t have to be inexpensive. Buy new ones. You don't have to spend $100. Wear some reflective materials and carry a flashlight. Or, go with someone!

What better time to exercise than when you have so much free time? Not only is that enough time, it's far better than doing nothing.

Overcoming the Objections

Excuse I'm out of shape. I can't leave the kids home alone.

My husband won't join me. There's something good on TV.

Counterpoint A thousand-mile journey begins with a single step. Many gyms offer some form of child care. Swap babysitting with a friend. Say you'll watch her kids when she exercises or runs errands. You can also walk or jog and have the kids ride their bikes alongside. You can also push your toddler in a baby jogger. You can't let a reluctant exerciser affect your health. Setting a good example, however, may inspire him to join you. It’s contagious!

Then tape the show with your DVR/VCR, or watch it and work out!

Overcoming the Objections

I don’t have time. I’m too tired. It’s too hard. I can’t afford it. It’s not working. It’s boring. I’m too fat. I hate sweating. It’s too hot. It’s too cold. What’s the point? I don’t know what to do…



Six Ways to Make Exercise Stick


Make it a PRIORITY and hold yourself ACCOUNTABLE.

• • • • • • Identify “why” you are doing this plan and be motivated by those personal reasons Capitalize on your “a-ha” moment!

Mindset is much of the battle. This article pinpoints that self-efficacy is the #1 reason why we don’t exercise. Give yourself daily pep talks!

Share your goals. Write them out for yourself and/or share with others. If other people are watching our behavior tends to improve.

Find someone you know (coworker, friend, family member) who exercises consistently and ask them for tips and ideas, or even to join in with them. Change your social norm by getting your family involved. Find ways to spend time with close friends or family while being active, it benefits everyone!


Six Ways to Make Exercise Stick

2. Make a PLAN.

• • • • • • Be SPECIFIC and be prepared • Time, Type, Location, Duration, Equipment Carve out time & plan ahead Treat your workout plan as an appointment Find your finest hour : Pick the time of day that you are most suited to Identify barriers and “work-arounds” Formulate a backup plan. If you can’t get to the gym in time, walking around the neighborhood could be your back up plan 15

Six Ways to Make Exercise Stick

3. Set REASONABLE goals.

• • • • • Start small Celebrate small accomplishments to foster encouragement Start where you are Find a routine that appeals to you • Adopt a three day standard OR • Shoot for every day (habit) Save a workout for the weekend 16

Six Ways to Make Exercise Stick

4. Focus on the HABIT.

• • • • Our behaviors are 99% habit When trying to create a new habit • Tie it to an “anchor” • • Start with something easy Celebrate after every execution Use visuals Be flexible 17

Six Ways to Make Exercise Stick

5. REWARD yourself • • • Reinforce the positive behavior Treat yourself Begin to identify natural rewards 18

Six Ways to Make Exercise Stick

6. Find an activity you ENJOY. The Fun Theory • • • • Consider the things you enjoy, but give all activities a fair shot Scan the community for events and programs you find interesting and exciting Don’t make exercise a punishment Learn something new 19

Activity Pyramid

Source: Activity Pyramid 20

Exercise = NOT one-size-fits-all

Critical Considerations: • • • • • • Role Schedule Responsibilities Environment Social Support Options for fitness 21

Six Ways to Make Exercise Stick

When beginning a new workout plan, ask yourself these questions: 1.

What is my



2. Would I rather workout


, with one or two people, or in a

group setting


3. Do I like high intensity for a

short time

or low intensity for a

longer time


4. Do I prefer




, or



5. Would I rather workout





6. What



7. How will you track your



8. How will you



9. Who/what will hold you



10. When will you start?


Templates for getting started

• Strength Training Template • Couch to 5k Template • Flexibility Workout Template 23


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