Overcoming Barriers and Difficulties


With our new goals in place, we set out with hope and our best intention that we will see them through and achieve them. And for some, that will happen with no worries at all. However, as part of that process is also recognising and identifying the barriers and difficulties that may present themselves. Identifying some of these barriers will assist in reaching the goals that we set.

I don’t have enough time Being time poor is especially common these days. Trying to fit in exercise along with work and family can be difficult.

Keep a diary of your daily activities for a week and use the diary to see how much spare time you actually have. You may find that you have more time than you think. You can then try to incorporate physical activity into your daily life.

For example, getting off the bus or train one stop earlier and walk the rest of the way. Take a brisk walk during your lunch break and encourage someone to go with you. Get the support of a friend, partner or family member to help with daily activities, caring for children etc. If finding a spare 30 minute block each day to exercise is difficult, perhaps break it up into two 15-minute blocks or even into three 10-minute blocks. You will still reap the fitness benefits.

Involve your family. Take a walk around your neighbourhood after dinner (also great for those who have a dog - they will benefit too!). Instead of playing board games or watching television together, head outside. You could play backyard cricket, go to your local swimming pool or take a walk through the park.

For those looking to improve on healthy eating habits, have a meal prep day where meals can be made and put in the freezer ready for when you don’t have time at night. Always make sure you have lots of healthy options in your home and at work so you won’t be tempted by other foods.

Exercise is boring Sometimes a lack of interest is the problem rather than lack of time.

Exercising with a friend is an excellent way to enjoy being active. Maybe taking up a team sport is the way to go. Cricket, football, netball, basketball are just some of the sports to be actively involved with and it also gives the chance to meet new people. Physical activity doesn’t have to be a lonely pursuit.

Change the way you think about physical activity. Exercise doesn’t need to be painful or dull for it to be good for you. Physical activity is all about getting more movement into your day with activities also being fun. Mixing thing up will also help in keeping things fun and exciting. What about dancing, gardening, boxing, pilates or yoga?

Consider using exercise equipment at home such a treadmill so that you can work out while watching your favourite television programs or listening to some good music. How about a mini circuit using steps, weights and a skipping rope.

I’m too tired Life can be exhausting and the days and weeks seem to go by so fast. Amazingly, the more active you are, the more energy you will have for everything else. Try to be active on most days of the week and you will soon feel more energetic. The fitter you are and the fitter you become, the more energy you will have.

Rearrange your schedule if you can. Be active in the morning rather than trying to find time at night after work. Exercise during your lunch break or change the way you commute to work by cycling or walking part or all of the way.

Improving your diet by eating healthy foods that can boost your energy levels and most importantly try to get more sleep.

It’s too hot, it’s too cold, it’s raining The weather is something we cannot control but there is always something you can do, regardless of the weather. Plan a variety of indoor and outdoor activities so that weather can’t interfere with your exercise plans.

As we hit a stream of hot weather, a workout video or yoga indoors at home still gets your body moving. If you prefer to exercise outdoors, head out early in the morning or late in the evening and avoid the hottest part of the day. Be sun smart and ensure you stay hydrated.

Taking to the pool is another great hot weather training option; swimming laps or pool exercises are low impact and can still give you a great workout.

Remember that it’s ok to have a setback in your regular activity or routine. To help avoid being discouraged, think about how you can overcome difficulties or challenges ahead of time. Have a support system to encourage you and keep changing and adding variety to your activity routine.

Every step you take towards achieving your goal is worth celebrating!

Acknowledge the barriers and celebrate the achievements

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