UHCL The Signal
The official student newspaper of the University of Houston-Clear Lake

This is what’s preventing you from sticking to a workout routine

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It’s not uncommon to hear someone say “I’m going to workout more,” or “I am going to be more active,” but two weeks into the new workout regime, he/she quits.

The problem is, many people don’t know how to start, or also fail to find a program that works well for them.

Campus Recreation hosted “Wellness Wednesday” March 21, featuring Steve Dooling, Technogym and certified personal trainer. Dooling, along with Campus Recreation Director Brian Mills discussed how to find the right workout plan and how to stick with it.

“You just gotta get up and get out there,” Mills said. “It’s easy to quit when your body isn’t used to exercising. Trust me, I hated it too.”

The speakers described a workout as a subset of holistic fitness and wellness, including mental, spiritual, emotional, social and physical wellness. A combination of all these values can help people achieve overall wellbeing, Mills argued.

How much should I be working out?
The latest research from the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), states an individual must do the following exercises:

  • Cardiorespiratory exercise:
    • 150 min a week (split into however many workouts as preferred)
  • Resistance exercise:
    • Adults: train each major muscle group 2-3 days per week.
  • Flexibility exercise:
    • At least 2-3 days each week.
  • Neuromotor Exercise (Also known as Functional Fitness Training)
    • 2-3 days per week.
    • Should involve motor skills – balance, agility and coordination

Dooling explained that the reason why many fail to stick to an exercise routine is because of the many “mental barriers” they encounter.

“Everybody has gone through one of these, if not all of these barriers,” Dooling said. “We’re all busy and have lives outside of work and school, but exercising should also be one of your priorities.”

Mills and Dooling argued some of these barriers include:

  • Insecurity:
    • People are intimidated by the atmosphere
    • People are intimidated by the atmosphere
    • People think everyone around them is watching/judging
  • Information:
    • Getting accurate information about how to start and what to do
  • Real Life:
    • Facilities (having access to a gym)
    • Time (or lack thereof)
    • Injuries
    • Cost
  • Enjoyment:
    • “If I don’t enjoy it, why would I do it?

Not being motivated to workout is a barrier for almost everyone, but believe it or not, sticking to a workout is easier than you may think.

How to get started?

  • Experiment, experiment, experiment!
    • Trying different things until you find what you enjoy
  • Set goals
    • SMART: Specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely
  • Get to know people
    • Working out with somebody will encourage you

Whether you’re alone, working out with someone, being part of a workout club or enrolling in a fitness class, the ways of working out are countless. What’s important is finding an activity that you’re comfortable with and that you actually enjoy.