Exercise success factors

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Exercising regularly is probably the single most important factor overall. If you want to make a real difference, you need to exercise regularly.
Doing a smaller amount four or five times a week is better than only going once or twice a week. If you stop doing exercise, you will start to regress.
Aim to make exercise part of your life, rather than something you do short-term as a means to an end. Stick with it for several months and it is very likely that you will actually start enjoying it!

Choose an exercise plan that suits your lifestyle

Start by evaluating your lifestyle and your other commitments and develop an exercise plan that fits in with your life. If you join the gym that’s an hour away from your home, chances are, you will be tempted to skip sessions. Choose something you enjoy doing (if you can’t think of anything, at least go for something you dislike least – you might grow to like it if you persist).

Start from small and increase intensity sensibly

It is important to choose a sustainable level or exertion – although workouts must be challenging, you need to increase your load sensibly. One of the most common beginner mistakes is to do too much too soon – and then get too tired to do anything. As general rule, do not increase your load by more than 10% a week – be it the amount of weight you lift or the number of miles you run or cycle.

Push beyond your comfort zone

You body adjusts to any type of repeated activity quickly, so in order to progress, you need to keep pushing yourself further. If you stick with the same exercise programme and routine for a prolonged period of time, your weight loss will plateau. There are some examples of people performing athletic feats such a running a marathon, while still carrying a lot of extra weight. Generally, it is a good idea to increase your exercise load gradually (see above – no more than 10% a week), and change your programme or add new elements to it every three months or so.

Make a commitment

You already that know exercise is important, and you probably promised yourself thousands of times that one day you will start doing it properly. Today is that day! Achieving your goals means working for it – if you don’t take control now, you will keep letting yourself down. Have a look at our list of excuses and see if any of them ring a bell.

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