Positive Planning Situations and circumstances will arise that could present new challenges to physical activity. By planning ahead people may find it much easier to overcome these obstacles.
Making it Last Here are some strategies to keep you on track in maintaining your active lifestyle.
TIP 1: GOOD PLANNING Studies show that people who get in the habit of setting aside time for physical activity are far more likely to remain active over the long run than those who don’t plan ahead.
TIP 2: BE FLEXIBLE Miss a day of activity? Plan another one for the next day! Injured?Try an alternative activity Sick?Wait until you feel better and gradually get back to a routine Use problem-solving strategiesto eliminate new barriers Remind yourself of the benefits of an active lifestyle
TIP 3: KEEP POSITIVE ATTITUDE Eliminate negative thinking and all-or-nothing thinking A positive attitude can go a long way toward helping you to get past rocky times and stay on track
Eliminating Negative Thinking Are your current thoughts leaving you feeling discouraged and keeping you from being active? What thoughts do you have when you miss a few days of physical activity?
Eliminating Negative Thinking Here is a four step process to erase negative messages and replace them with words of encouragement.
Eliminating Negative Thinking Step 1: Identify the negative thought – Too many people let negative thoughts take over. As soon as they realize they have lapsed they collapse and give in. If you find yourself slipping back into bad habits, be aware of the thoughts that lead you there. Common negative thoughts include: “I’m a failure”, “I never liked exercise”, “It’s too hard.” Don’t let your negative thoughts win!
Eliminating Negative Thinking Step 2: Decide whether the thought is right or wrong – Hint: The thought is usually wrong! It is reasonable to be concerned if you have gotten off track, but no one is a failure because they don’t meet their plan one day, one week, or even longer.
Eliminating Negative Thinking Step 3: Counter the negative thought with a more accurate, reasonable, and positive response – Negative Thought: “I haven’t stuck to my plan and I’m never going to be able to do it.” Positive Counter: “I am having a set back, but it doesn’t have to be permanent. I am still committed to being physically active and I know I can do it.” Continue to remind yourself of ways you have gotten back on track by reviewing previous weeks.
Eliminating Negative Thinking Step 4: Make a specific plan to get back on track – Decide right now to put a 15 minutes walk back into your routine each day to get yourself back on track.
Whenever you find yourself getting off track or thinking negative thoughts remember these strategies and get right back to being physically active for good!