There is something very powerful about harnessing your own power to create changes in your life. That is what makes exercise a healthy addiction. It is one of the best things you can do that feels good and is actually good for you. With exercise you get results that feel great instead of guilt, and who can argue with outcomes like that?

Start by setting small goals

smart goal settingYou have probably heard the expression – a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Make fitness a part of your journey toward wellness. Think of health changes such as losing weight and inches or committing to a fitness routine as points along the journey. Establish mile markers along the way to keep yourself feeling encouraged. Here are some examples:

  • I will start my exercise program on April 1 and exercise at least three times a

week for 30 minutes for the next four weeks.

  • I will lose five pounds in the next four weeks.
  • I will lose three inches in the next four weeks.
  • I will be able to run for 30 seconds without stopping by May 1

Although your overall goal may be to lose twenty pounds you are more likely to be successful if you set smaller goals along the way. Setting incremental goals keeps you encouraged because you give yourself the opportunity to see results and experience success quickly. You can use the feeling of being successful to motivate yourself to keep going or push even more.

Share your success with supporters

When you honor your goal of getting started on April 1, let your friends know. The kudos you get will be good motivation to keep going. Keep sharing as you exercise each week.

The feedback you get from supporters will fuel that feel good feeling. You won’t want to trade that in for the disappointment you feel when you break promises to yourself or others.

Take measurements or photos

Happy slim woman measuring her waistProof of your progress is a major shot in the arm. Watching the numbers fall or feeling a little wiggle room in your jeans gives you a healthy kind of high.

Enjoy the endorphins

Exercise unleashes a cocktail of chemicals so potent the feeling is described as a “high.”

There is no crime in getting high on exercise, so go ahead and take advantage of the boost in feelings of confidence, calm and well-being it generates.

Keep a journal

Record your feelings along the journey. How did your workout feel today? Did you notice that you were able to do more than you were when you started? Do you notice that you sleep better or have more energy? Write about whatever is happening for you. You may even want to share your thoughts or reflections about your wellness journey on Facebook or on a blog. Staying connected to your feelings about fitness will keep you focused on why you are doing it and force you to notice some of the small joys and triumphs along the way. Keep at it. As you move into the journey the more you move the better you will feel. In fact, the feeling will be so good you won’t want to give it up.