I tell my patients to go exercise most days for at least 30 minutes. But what's to keep you going?
As I practice what I preach to my patients, I exercise just about every day. And there are days when my motivation is lacking. Sometimes when the alarm goes off at 4:30 am, I just want to roll over and go back to sleep. And, were I to be completely honest, every so often that's what I do. But, 99% of the time, I get up and go.
My goals keep me on track. In the next two months, I have two triathlons, and I want to perform my best. If I miss a workout, I fear that may impact how ready I am for my races.
Yesterday morning, on the treadmill at the gym, five miles into an eight mile tempo run, with my heart racing and sweat dripping on the treadmill, I was tired out. I thought, I can end this at six miles.
What kept me going was thinking of my long-term goals -- I want to qualify for the Boston Marathon for 2010. To do that, I need to get faster, and hard workouts like this have made me a faster runner and a better athlete.
Somehow I got a second wind and finished off my 8 miles with a sense of true accomplishment.
Goals are important for keeping us on track. If I didn't have goals for myself, I don't think I'd be able to wake up early and exercise.
A goal can be as simple as wanting to finish a 5K race. Another great goal is having the stamina to keep up with active grandchildren.
Whatever it is, find a reason to get out the door and exercise.
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