In the highly scientific poll in my New Year’s Blog, the most common general resolution (as of today) was “Exercise More.” Excellent choice–let’s get on that!!
There are plenty of websites and apps out there with ideas on different ways to accomplish your exercise goals. Of course, no one way or one approach will work for everyone. In fact, one approach may just be many little approaches to find that great fit to support your goal.
So here are just a few ideas and tools to help you start.
There is an exorbitant amount of ways to exercise–it truly boggles the mind.
By focusing the resolution for yourself (and not how someone else reaches the same goal), you have a better chance of sticking with it. Don’t join a gym just because everyone joins a gym. Join a gym because that’s how you enjoy exercising.
For your resolution:
- Make It S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, timely)
- Make It Fun
- Make It Inspiring
- Make It You
Make It Fun
Exercise is easier if you enjoy it!
Track your progress to walk the mileage around the Beltway. Join a bowling league or an adult kickball team. Try an exercise class built on hip-hop or pole-dancing. Learn to fly on that trapeze.
Here a few sites to get the creative juices flowing:
- World Adult Kickball Association
- Frisbee Golf, Professional Disc Golf Association
- Ultimate Frisbee, USA Ultimate
- Trapeze School New York -Washington, DC location
- 20 Creative Ways to Exercise
Or if you want to stay in and harness exercise power online:
- Learn Basic Jazzercise Moves (videos)
- 16 Pole Exercises by expertvillage (videos)
- Free Exercise Videos by Workoutz.com (more traditional)
Or be a little mobile:
- Prêt-à-Yoga Lite – Free beginner yoga app for iPhone, iPad & iPod Touch.
- Droid Dance – Android app that tracks your dance beats and shows you the calories expended.
Make It Inspiring
In 2004, I decided to run in a marathon. To this day, no one is really sure why I did this, including myself. But I’d do it again.
For me, having regularly scheduled workout time along with the knowledge that the fundraising I was doing was going to a worthy cause added to my dedication.
You can start with a short walk, like 5km (3.1 miles). For instance:
Walk for Lupus – Alliance of Lupus Research
Then move on to a really long walk over three days:
The 3-Day – Susan G. Komen
And graduate to running 26.2 miles in eight hours or less:
Team to End AIDS (T2) - AIDS United
Make It You
Once, my family had a gerbil that got out of his cage the night before moving day. My sister and I morosely watched the front door (completely in the way of the movers, I’m sure), hoping to way-lay Peanut mid-dash to the front yard. He never passed by.
Instead, hours later, we found our sweet pet in the basement, running around in circles at the bottom of the dry sump pump well. He’d been there all day, and probably most of the previous night. Hours–long, dark, tortuous hours–of running in circles; Peanut was never quite the same after that.
I feel the same way about most exercise equipment. In my head, exercise equipment equates to long, tortuous hours of me going nowhere, accomplishing nothing. So circuit training, treadmills, stairmasters, and the like have never been great solutions for me to the “how to exercise more frequently?” question.
YOU KNOW YOURSELF. Don’t set yourself up to fail. Signing up for a fundraising walk or a hip-hop dance class is going to be a much better choice for me while other folks do best with a personal trainer and a Trinity Center membership. (FYI: Trinity Students, take advantage of the FREE Trinity Center membership, including all the fun classes and the pool!)
Track Your Progress
Whichever way or ways you decide to exercise, there are plenty of websites and smartphone apps to encourage you and help you track your progress.
General Websites & Apps
- From GymBuddy website: “An adaptable workout log. Define your exercises, plan your workouts, and log your sets by repetitions, weight, time & notes.” Includes 27 page manual online.
- iPhone App available.
- Two thumbs up from Web Team member, Timothy!
- Extensive food & exercise log. From MyFitnessPal website: “Now you can log your food and exercise wherever and whenever you’d like – even if you can’t get to a computer…All our apps work with our website and have access to the same comprehensive database of over 1,350,000 foods and restaurant items. Any changes you make on your phone will be synchronized to the web and vice versa — so you always have complete and up-to-date access to your account.”
Includes a barcode scanner to upload items directly into food diary!
- iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry, and Windows Phone 7 Apps available.
- Website includes community support, extensive food and exercise database, and other bonuses like badges for your personal blog.
- Two thumbs up from Web Team member, Katie!
- Website interface includes support community and exercise ideas.
- iPhone & Android Apps available, as well as Palm and Java-enabled Phone Apps.
- Community-based website allows for automatic tracking of your exercise distance data (the joy of GPS!).
- Android App available. – Endomondo Sports Tracker
Here are a few more focused sites/apps:
- RunKeeper – Running focused website and apps. iPhone & Android Apps available.
- Lose It – More weight-loss focused food & exercise diary website and apps. iPhone & Android Apps available.
- Ab Workouts Free – iPhone App.
- Many pedometer app options