The reasons often given for quitting exercise are inconvenience and lack of time. One method to help you increase and maintain your adherence to exercise is to join a physical activity exercise program with the following characteristics:
Availability. Change is facilitated by accessible programs. Find a program with convenient times and a convenient location.
Social support. When you include your family and/or "significant others" (i.e., persons important to you such as your spouse, work colleagues, or friends), they can encourage and support your participation in the fitness program.
Increasing your physical activity is one of the best investments you can make for your future. Regular exercise can improve your health in many ways, including the following areas:
Emphasis on enjoyment. Learning new behaviors must be pleasurable if you are to discard old behaviors. Choose an upbeat fitness program and activities with an enjoyable atmosphere. The performance approach (e.g., military or athletic) aimed only at producing results at the risk of hating the exercise will not work in a lifelong fitness program. Think about the potential fitness gains due to your new behavior rather than any negative aspects. Your contract with a friend or helper should focus on these gains through the physical activities you enjoy.
Quality programs. Qualified and enthusiastic personnel; regular assessment of important fitness components; relevant personal and general communication; and a variety of group/individual exercises, games, and sports that interest you are all qualities of a good fitness program. Physical activity and socialization make a profitable combination, as evidenced by the success of many dance and physical activity and fitness groups. Many people enjoy the social interaction with others who often support them in continuing the exercise.
Role models. People learn from each other and from the people to whom they admire. Choose a fitness instructor who displays healthy behaviors and enjoys a healthy lifestyle. Another way to begin exercising is to do it on your own. In this case, signing a contract with a friend is a good way to begin. You should know of what such a contract might include. (Of course, you should modify it to be just right for you.) The so-called ''rewards" of smoking include a series of "highs" when nicotine reaches the brain a few seconds after inhaling. An addiction to smoking is similar to addiction to other drugs. You experience a "craving" for a cigarette, and withdrawal symptoms make it a habit resistant to change. But you can break the habit, as millions have done.