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10 Ways to Build an Actually Sustainable Workout Routine You Love

One of the biggest barriers to starting (or maintaining) an exercise program has to do with something I call fitness resistance—the reluctance to welcome fitness into our lives in the form of a sustainable workout routine or program.

In my experience as a personal trainer, I’ve discovered people seem to fall into three general camps when it comes to fitness: the resisters who don’t regularly engage, the honeymooners (the on-and-off exercisers who go all in for a short amount of time), and the consistent exercisers. While our society tends to uphold people that do health and fitness “well,” I just want to emphasize that none of these groups is inherently better than the other. Everyone is doing their best.

But I also know that engaging in regular exercise brings so many benefits—everything from improvements in self-esteem and energy to just feeling better in general—which is why I want to help people work to overcome their fitness resistance.

Through engaging in hundreds of conversations with my clients, I’ve noticed there’s one common thread behind fitness resistance, especially for people who never or rarely engage with fitness: fear. Usually, it’s fear of failure, judgment, or pain. And, of course, a person’s fitness resistance can involve more than one of these fears (or even all of them).

If this is something that you notice about yourself, I challenge you to examine these three potential fears too: What’s behind your resistance, and what’s it telling you? Here’s more information about what’s often at the root of these specific fitness fears, along with some tips I’ve learned that can help combat them to help build a sustainable workout routine.

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