Keeping You on the Road to Better Health

Keeping You on the Road to Better HealthHave you ever sworn to exercise on a regular basis but ended up quitting in the middle of the road? If you have, you are not alone. This happens to many people too. They tend to stop when they get bored or results come too slowly.

Long-term adherence to physical activity is important to maintain your health benefits. It has a long-term survival benefit, and is linked to greater fitness improvements and disease-specific outcomes as well as increased function and quality of life. But unfortunately, 1 in every 2 people will drop out of physical activity programme within a few months.

Who is Most Likely to Drop Out?

People who are more likely to quit too soon are exactly those who need physical activity the most. Demographic risk factors for low adherence include older age, female gender, non-white ethnicity, and low socio-economic status. Combined with pre-existing chronic disease and/or lack of physical function and weight issues, these make someone an ultimate quitter.

Sticking on the Road

If you feel you are lacking in devotion and things start to fall apart, remember that there are many known benefits of being active. Regular exercise or physical activity helps many of the body’s system function better, keeps heart disease, diabetes, and several other diseases at bay, and is a star component for losing weight.

Know what counts as activity. Any activity that increases your heart rate or respiratory rate counts as physical activity, even household chores. Clean your house, play with the kids, dance – the choice is yours. Keep yourself active. Choose activities that you will enjoy. Enjoyment is a good indicator of long-term behaviour change.

Set goals. Be specific and realistic with your goals. To make them easier to achieve, set short-term goals. If you are trying to become more physically active and realistic, well-planned goals keep you focused and motivated. Monitor your progress regularly and adapt to changing circumstances. Reward yourself for every mini goal you achieve. Continue to work on your way until you reach your ultimate goal.

Identify barriers. If you’re committed to a physical activity program and setting goals for yourself, it is helpful to first pinpoint your personal barriers. Troubleshooting and developing tactics in advance will give you better success overcoming them.

Get support. There are several people who can help you when you are ready to get moving. See a physiotherapist, go to a local community centre, visit your local gym or sports centre, try sports, take your physically active friends with you, and know other opportunities for physical activity in your area.

Stay motivated. It takes motivation and action to get successful outcome. The more motivated you are, the easier it is to work on your fitness program and reach your goals. Doctors use motivational interventions which can help adherence to exercise, have a positive effect on long-term exercise behaviour, improve self-efficacy and reduce levels of activity limitation.

One study showed that motivational interventions are successful for increasing healthy physical activity behaviour. Study also says that physiotherapists are ideally placed to take this role. Physiotherapists as promoters, preventers and rehabilitators are ideally placed to influence physical activity behaviours.

If you are looking for a positive influence on your journey to better health, talk to a Perth physiotherapist. Call i Physio Perth at 9444 8729 today!