How to Create an Exercise Plan

Do you struggle to make exercise a regular part of your daily routine?

If you said yes, that’s okay! Each and every day, we are uner a remarkable amount of stress. There is always so much to do and it can be hard and overwhelming to make time for exercise.

But… we have to. Exercise, moving our bodies, is the key to feeling energized, having better focus, feeling calmer, staying at a healthy body weight, and overall good health!

So how can you create an exercise plan? Here’s a 5 step approach you can try today:

1. Create a realistic goal: before you get ahead of yourself and try to workout every single day for the next… forever, start small. If you never or rarely workout, start with a 2x/week goal. Just commit to 2 days each week where you will intentionally move your body for 30-60 minutes.

2. Take a look at your calendar: Each week (or before the next week starts) take a look at your calendar and see what sort of commitments you already have in place. Tuesday’s full from sunrise to sunset? Then Tuesday is not the day to schedule your workout. Choose the days where you have less on your plate so that you feel less overwhelmed about making time for this new habit.

3. Consider “habit stacking”: Habit Stacking is when you use a habit you already have in place to help you build another habit. For example, if you want to drink more water but are struggling to get it in, you can habit stack with your morning coffee routine. Rather than just pouring yourself that cup o’ joe right away, pour yourself 20oz of water and say to yourself that you must drink your water and then you have your coffee. The coffee habit serves as your reminder! One way this can be done for exercise is to choose a gym that is on your way to or from work (or somewhere you go every day). Driving that road is a daily habit. Now, add a stop at the gym. Attach the gym to your drive to/from work and you are more likely to stick to it.

4. Again, start small: Do not come out the gate thinking you have to start doing hour long CrossFit workouts. If a 30 minute walk is what is feasible for you, START THERE. It’s always better to do something and then progress than to overdo something and throw in the towel!

5. Celebrate yourself: creating a new workout routine is not easy! As you find yourself hitting your 2x/week goal, increase it to 3x/week. Some weeks will feel easy while others you may end up backtracking. That is all normal as well as you continue to go back to these steps and make a commitment to yourself. And then CELEBRATE! You deserve to give yourself a pat on the back so go ahead and do it :)

What’s your biggest struggle with creating an exercise routine?

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