Why outdoor exercise may be the best New Year Resolution ever
There is no doubt about the fact that the past couple of years have been some of the toughest we have ever faced. With the world see-sawing between periods of relative normality and increased restrictions as new waves and variants strike, many of us are struggling to maintain any type of meaningful fitness regime.
But with the new start that 2022 offers, it is time to dust down the training shoes, stop making excuses, and experience the joy that outdoor exercise can bring into your life.
Exercise has many known benefits, both physical and mental, and creating a goal for yourself to increase the amount of exercise you take is a fantastic way of improving the overall quality of life as we move into the new year.
Unfortunately, even with the best will in the world, many of us quickly fall by the wayside when it comes to keeping to New Year Resolutions. This guide is crammed full of useful tips to help you make 2022 a fit and healthy one.
1. Small Steps – Set realistic goals
Setting unrealistic goals is one of the major stumbling blocks when it comes to keeping to an exercise routine. Remember that you are in this for the long haul and will work best if you tailor a routine that suits your current level of fitness.
For instance, you may be desperate to get back onto the five-a-side pitch, but if you last played 10-years and 2-stone ago, then it is best to get some level of fitness back before you begin banging the goals in again.
Regaining those glory playing days may be the ultimate goal, but to get there, you have to look at the bigger picture. Start by building up some stamina and getting those muscles used to working out. Depending on your starting point, this could be by setting yourself a target of jogging for a mile a couple of times a week or even just walking the same distance.
The point is to set yourself a comfortable, safe, and realistic target that won’t see you injured or just plain discouraged before you’ve had the chance to begin in earnest.
By exercising within your means, it won’t take long to regain your 5-a-side prowess!
2. Involve Family or Friends
Making exercise a social occasion is a great way of keeping to a routine. We are not all meant to enjoy the “loneliness of the long-distance runner.”
By getting involved in group activities, whether it’s friends, work colleagues, or family, has been proven to be far more effective when it comes to exercise regimes when compared to solo exercising.
Outdoor fitness classes, group runs or walks, and cycling are all examples of great outdoor activities that are easily accessible and organisable.
Particularly popular for groups is 5-a-side football, especially when everyone is of similar fitness levels. Once again, the important thing here is to know your limits. There is nothing more discouraging than losing every game you play, so make sure to join an appropriate league or arrange games against similarly skilled and fit teams.
3. Focus on the big picture
Whether you are setting out with definite goals like weight loss or just want to hone your fitness levels a bit, the important thing is to always remain focused on the bigger picture. It is easy to become discouraged when hoped-for results are not achieved in a week or two.
Motivation can easily slip when instant results are not achieved, but instant results are unlikely. The most crucial factor is to remember that the results when they come (and they will), are going to be exponential.
It may take a couple of weeks to notice even a slight change and a further week or two before the effects are truly noticeable, but stick with it, and before long, the results will be plain for everyone to see.
4. Keep it Fun and Interesting
If you are not someone who loves to run for the sake of running, then taking up jogging and running is probably going to fail. It’s a similar story with exercise classes, cycling, hill-walking etc. If it’s not your bag, then it is going to make it difficult to stick to your resolution.
By pairing your exercise regime with activities you enjoy, then the chances of success are hugely multiplied. Sports activities like 5-a-side football are a great way to include the essential element of enjoyment into your outdoor exercising.
Ultimately, the more enjoyment you get from exercising, the more likely you are to keep at it.
5. Set a schedule
It is easy to let the days slip by with the promise that you will “do it tomorrow.” Unfortunately, procrastination is the number one killer of exercising regimes!
By setting a schedule and with a bit of willpower keeping to it, your new exercise regime soon becomes part and parcel of your routine.
This is easily achieved with activities like 5-a-side football, where pitches and matches are generally organised in advance. This is particularly useful in the early days when your enthusiasm and motivation will be most likely to wane.
Scheduling makes it a thing, not just some distant pipedream that was undertaken in the heat of a New Year moment!
At Astro Park, we are as committed to helping you keep your New Year Resolution as you are! We are Dublin’s premier all-weather venue for a whole host of fun outdoor group activities to help you keep fit and have great fun at the same time.
We have something for all the family and can cater for groups of all sizes and ages. Why not contact us today and make 2022 the year you kept your New Year Resolution.