When it comes to working out, there is one motto I live by that never fails to motivate me no matter what. And without further ado, here it is: "Exercising is part of my daily routine, just like brushing my teeth." In other words, would I ever not brush my teeth while getting ready in the morning, or at night before I go to bed? I try to incorporate working out into my life in the same way — it's never optional.
That being said, I could have all the excuses in the world not to work out — I'm a working mom. Need I say more? I think about those choice like this: Just as I didn't give up dental hygiene to have a family or advance my career, I am still committed to exercising every day. My motto keeps me on track, even on the busiest of days. The reason I never skip a workout is simple: I've noticed I feel better about myself and, well, life in general, when I exercise. Since I already know exercise is vital for my well-being and overall health, it's useless fighting nagging anxieties over whether I'll find time to workout. With this mindset, I am already committed to making physical activity a part of my day, as much as paying the proper attention to my pearly whites.
Of course, I always listen to my body — so not every day will feature an intense sweat session. Maybe it's a brisk walk with my dogs one evening after dinner. I love a good home yoga practice — mine typically happen in my kids' playroom so I can watch them tear it apart as I go through my sun salutations. If I'm feeling particularly low energy, I might stretch before bed while watching TV. Or, on a day when I only have a few minutes, I sneak in an intense mix of planks, crunches, squats, and lunges — sometimes I'll literally lunge down the hallway while I'm on a conference call.
Varying my routine also helps me stick with my dedication to stay fit. Being flexible with when and where the workout happens is key, too. But it all comes back to my motto. Exercise shouldn't be something I struggle to fit into my day — it's a form of mental and physical hygiene that is as compulsory as brushing my teeth. This mind shift was key for my brother, who, a few years ago, struggled with finding the motivation to exercise given his work schedule, which required him to travel nearly half of the year. I wasn't sure it would help in his situation, but I shared my motto with him. He says those words changed his life, and he has since toned up, lost weight, and refocused on his health after years of putting his own well-being on the back burner in favor of getting ahead in his career. As a result of making exercise just as much a part of his day as brushing his teeth, he claims to be happier as well as healthier.
Maybe my motto could work for everyone — but it's more about identifying a slogan that inspires you to be your best every day. And whenever you feel blah and unmotivated, come back to it. A simple phrase can make all the difference in committing to working out regularly.