Exercise is a powerful weapon against stress, encouraging the production of energizing endorphins, strengthening our immunity system and easing anxiety. Exercise helps with fitness.
Studies also show that exercise is also how we energize our brains. Biologist John Medina's book, “Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School, " points out that being on the move helps us think more productively. But what happens when exercise burnout strikes? Exercise gets pushed off the top of the list when you become bored, or you are stressed for time and other obligations.
Here are seven tips to beat back exercise burnout:
1. Vary your routine. Choose working out on the stretching machines one day and then pick weights the next. Skip one day of aerobic exercise for a weightlifting session. Varying your routine staves off boredom, while also exercising different muscle groups. Make a weekly list of varying exercise routines.
2. Vary exercise times. Exercising at the same time of day can lead to boredom. The same exercise routine can also backfire if competing obligations take over that time frame. You can be flexible about when you exercise and even how long you spend exercising. You can switch a 30-minute morning routine into a 15-minute morning routine followed by a 15-minute early evening workout.
3. Take an exercise class. Take an exercise class to vary your exercise routine. Gyms and local community centers offer classes. Choose the one that fits your budget, because you don't want money to become a reason to avoid exercise. Exercise videos also can be a lively way to change your routine
4. Exercise with a friend. Allow yourself to socialize while you exercise with an exercise buddy who will go with you to the gym or accompany you on healthy walks. Feel free to share your ideas for changing the routine and you can get creative about changing your schedule if other obligations arise.
5. Don't skip a good night's sleep. A lack of adequate sleep can play a strong role in exercise burnout, because exhaustion creates stress, fatigue and a lack of focus. A lack of focus can also lead to exercise injuries. Ease into a good night's sleep by avoiding exercise late at night.
6. Stretch. Stretching exercises before, during or after your exercise routine will keep you limber and less likely to experience minor exercise injuries. If you find yourself working late, take a standing or stretching break to do a few exercises in your office before you get back to work.
7. Take an exercise break. A break from exercise will help you steer clear of exercise burnout. Give yourself a vacation from exercise - take a day or two away. You'll return to your routine stress-free, rested and re-focused, and if you return to your regular regime, your fitness won't suffer.
Ruth Klein is a branding, marketing, publicity and time management consultant to law firms and business professionals ranging from solo entrepreneurs to the Fortune 500. As an award-winning business owner with a master's degree in clinical psychology, Klein brings her unique, results-driven insights, expertise and practical solutions to her law firm clients. For more information, visit http://www.ruthklein.com