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How to make exercise a habit

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This topic for today is either really easy for you to do or really hard for you to do… So, I want to talk about how to make exercise a habit… Even when you hate it! You guys know that I am big into habits, right’ You all have habits that you are doing every single day. You have so many that you don’t even think about it because habits are how life “just happens”! They are as simple as how we wake up in the morning and what we do throughout the day without even thinking about them. And that is how I want the exercise to be for you. I want it to come so easy to you that you just do it. It is just a natural habit for you! And I have ways you can do that!


So why are habits important!’ They take the guesswork out of the thinking process! And you WANT TO take the guesswork out of the process to make it automatic. Habits also keep us accountable. It just gets done on a daily basis and it becomes automatic. Exercise can become that automatic habit to help you become accountable to yourself and your health because you’re taking care of it!! And those habits WILL support you to succeed and reach your goals!

When it comes to habits and exercising, there are so many personalities. There are different personalities when it comes to building these habits. You have the scheduler, they put it on paper! Then you have some people that don’t want to be tied down to that. Some people track it all down! Others despise any of that! It all depends on you because everyone has their preference for this!

What are the overarching ways that people establish their exercise as a habit’

First place…
I am all about SMALL STEPS. Take a look at the Tortoise and the Hare… I want to you to be a tortoise. I want to win the bleeping race!! So many of you want to go big or go home, but not everyone can do that. It doesn’t work for a lot of people. If you break down your goal and do it smaller, you may make it more sustainable. Small steps get the job done. Trust me… It is much easier to imagine exercising for a few minutes and putting in smaller distances at the beginning instead of throwing it all in at first!

Chip away our goals, day by day, week by week. Your mental and physical endurance will build and before you know it you’ve achieved the habit you are working for. Step by step. Mile by mile.

If you’re doing the GO BIG or go home approach, you are going to dive headfirst and take immediate action. To do that, you have to have INTRINSIC motivation! Your internal motivation has to be on level 500. You have a significant amount of motivation that you are going to hit the ground running. Some people go from 0-60.. Others cannot. What can give you that motivation to go big or go home’ If your goal isn’t that overarching motivation, it’s tough to get through difficult times. So, this has to excite you.

Setting goals!
Goals are my jam… As you know if you have been listening here for a bit! Goals have a tendency to have us reach a bit too high. So, let’s work the REPS to see if this goal will work for you! (Here is the podcast all about it!)

1. Is it REALISTIC – What is going on in my life right now that is realistic’
2. Are you EXCITED about it” – Do you look forward to doing it’ Do you even like it’ Does it get you revved up to do it’
3. Make a PLAN For it! – Look in your world and see HOW this is going to fit into that world. Time always has a way of being filled with other things, UNLESS we decide how we fill our day.
4. It has to be SUSTAINABLE! – What happens after day 30′ What can you do for your natural born life! Can you do this forever’

I want you to succeed with your goals and REPS can help you get there!

There has to be a SCHEDULE!
I prefer this. I prefer it to be on your schedule. I know some people feel the schedule keeps them pinned in and they don’t want to be tied down. I like to call what I do structured flexibility! I have a schedule of the days I am going to work out, but I also have a plan B in case something comes up! I put it into my calendar as if it’s an appointment I cannot break because guess what”’ What gets scheduled gets done!

THIS is where most of my clients say they need the biggest amount of help… Being accountable. If you tell me, you are doing X Y Z. I am going to ask if you did X Y Z! If you don’t get it done, you are going to look at your week and see why we didn’t get it done. Let’s look at your week and see what’s tripping you up” Are you taking on too much’

Let’s get really real with ourselves. If you can’t do all 3, where are you going to focus your time’ I don’t want you to feel bad every week, I want you to have some WINS under your belt. This is how I provide you with accountability. Are you taking on a bit too much now’ How can we work together to brainstorm solutions around the mud you are getting stuck in’

Find yourself an exercise partner.
Have that workout partner that you go for a walk with!! Because you know what” You are less likely to blow someone else off vs ourselves. AM I RIGHT” Is there a person you currently workout with or would like to work out with’ Join a team!! A marathon team, etc. as a way of community and camaraderie. Within my Fit Girl Magic group on Facebook, I DO THAT because I know there are people out there that don’t have friends out there that talk about fitness and health, so they need a place to talk about that with others! I give them that space.

Be a role model.
For me, this is HUGE. This is my HUGE accountability!! I can’t tell a client to do all of this, meanwhile, I am not doing it… I want to be able to say, everything I tell you is stuff I currently do or have done in the past! You want to be a role model for people around you. You are the healthy person in your circle and people will start coming to you. Same thing for your kids. Be a role model for them as well!

It has to be FUN!
Your workouts have to be fun! You have to look forward to doing it… Ice skating’ Rock climb’ MMA’ Bike riding’ Hiking’ What do you really enjoy’ What brings you joy and do it. Think about this and find that joy and go out and do it!

Reward yourself.
Ok. NOW I am NOT talking about food. You are not a dog or a lab rat! Really take time to think about your reward. Do you want to get a massage if you get your workout in 3 out of the 5 days you said you were going to’ Or are you going to buy yourself some songs on iTunes (do people even do that anymore) or binge-watch a show if you workout’ What is a reward that is actually motivating for you’ What is going to get you feeling excited and motivated’

Ask questions.
Be clear about what it is you are trying to achieve. Have the courage to break free from your typical “I’ll get to it” patterns. Push yourself out of your comfort zones! You can do this; I have faith in you that you can!

Variety or routine’
Are you excited to switch things up a bit from time to time’ Variety could be the key if you need to try something new to motivate you. Some people need to do different things and different workouts. Other people want to build a routine. In my Fit Girl Magic Society, I give you a new workout every month so you can see progressions. Some people don’t need to see it, some people also just don’t want to be bored. For every way you want to exercise, there is a way for you to get gains!

Make it a ritual.
My husband and I used to see a trainer every Saturday, so Friday date night was early, then we would do breakfast and grocery shopping after. Everything was centered around that Saturday workout. That was our ritual. Now we go spin on Monday mornings that’s our ritual.

What is your ritual to get you motivated to work out’ I set up my clothes the night before and I have my workout already, so I know what I am doing the next day. So, all that I have to do is get up and I JUST DO THE WORK! No frills NO FUSS!

Are you more about the beginning or the end’
Do you like to start something new to see if you get better at it’ Or are you more that you want to start something and not deal with the bumps along the road’ Everyone is a beginner; sorry you can’t just skip to the good part… Everyone is a disaster before you become a master!! What is your mentality when it comes to this’ Get in and crush it or get in and see my progress over time’

What happens if your habits aren’t sticking’
No matter what I do and try it’s just not working out. Everyone makes mistakes, everyone trips over their own feet multiple times, so give yourself grace. Everyone falls down… But it’s how you get back up! You have to have the mindset that you are back on, and you are going to nail it the next time. If you miss one day of working out, make sure you are getting it the next day! Check your ego!! Don’t get caught up in the “shoulds”. Thank you, Dr. Dre, “Check yourself before you wreck yourself.”

James Clear has an amazing analogy for this “An ice cube in a room just sits there and nothing happens. Raise the temperature in the room and still, nothing happens. Move it up another degree and nothing is happening. But all it takes is 1 degree above freezing to start that melt. Then a few more droplets with every degree.”

This comment is about giving up the immediate results! Our ice isn’t going to melt automatically! Every degree you change, that is YOU! You are adding to the melting of the old ways of doing things and seeing things. 1 degree at a time is the best way we are going to maintain these steady exercise habits.

Ask yourself why….
Why do you want this’ Get clear about what it is you are going to achieve and why the heck do you want this’ Ask yourself why 5 times!!

Have the courage to do something different.
Incorporate different things one at a time to see what is truly going on. This goes for food and working out! If you have always run and never strength trained, maybe that strength training will give you a kick in the rump shaker to get going!Alright… I want to leave you with this.

Close your eyes…
Imagine yourself in 6 months.
You have set this goal and you are on target doing it.
Imagine if you fail…
Write down what caused you to fail.
What were the obstacles’ What did you trip over’
What stopped you from consistently being able to do that’
What trips me up and how can I circumvent them’
If X happens, then I will do Y.
Always have a plan B so you are not caught flat-footed!At the end of the day, creating exercise habits may not be simple, but it is worth the time and attention to find out what works for you and what sticks!!


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