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How To Get Motivated to Exercise

It can be hard to exercise. Here are 5 tips to help you get off the couch and get fit.

5. Bounce Back From Setbacks

You’ve set a reasonable fitness goal. You’ve prepared for potential problems. Yet somehow you still didn’t make it to the gym today as you had planned. Don't let that be your downfall.

"For many people, this is a slippery slope," Hanson says. "It reminds them of times when they failed before, and they begin to think of themselves as exercise failures."

When this happens, it’s time for an attitude adjustment so you don’t completely lose your motivation to exercise. If you miss the gym on Monday, that doesn’t mean your whole week is shot, Hanson says. It simply means you need to hit the gym on Tuesday or take the dog for an extra-long walk tonight.

Knowing how to exercise isn’t just a matter of learning how to use your body to hold a yoga pose or swing a racquet. It also involves learning how to use your mind to propel yourself into action and stick with a fitness routine.

"Start thinking of yourself as someone who exercises," says Hoefs. "Eventually, that will become your identity."

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Reviewed on January 14, 2012

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