The other day I was bemoaning my lack of consistent exercise to a friend. Having her own busy life and responsibilities, she commiserated with me and then told me about a trick she just learned from her new personal trainer. (Her husband bought her 10 sessions with a personal trainer as a birthday gift per her request. She's hoping it will jump start her exercise plan.)
Amy, the trainer, said a lot of people think they don't have time to exercise because they think they have to do it for 45 minutes or more to get any results. That's not necessarily true. On the days my friend doesn't have a training session, Amy suggested she exercise 15 minutes a day every day with the goal being to exercise 100 consecutive days. Surely, she could squeeze out 15 minutes a day without too much of a problem.
Three weeks later, my friend has exercised every day so far. The first couple of days she watched the clock like a hawk and as soon as she hit the 15 minute mark, she was done but then she noticed she started going a little longer - 17 minutes, then 21 minutes. She's up to 25 minutes and she says she doesn't feel like she's sacrificing anything else to exercise a little longer than the original 15 minutes.
She marks each day that she's exercised with a little smiley face on her calendar and says she likes being able to see all those happy faces lined up in a row at the end of the week. It gives her a sense of accomplishment.
Needing to exercise on a regular basis as an attempt to stall having knee surgery, I'm taking the advice of Amy. Starting today, I've scheduled 15 minutes to walk on the treadmill every day this week. I don't know if I'll make it 100 days in a row, but I'm certainly going to try. I even went out and bought little smiley face stickers to put on my calendar.