THE INC. LIFE

Want to be Better at Work? Stick to a Regular Fitness Routine

Plus, steps on how you can find time for that daily fitness fix

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BY Pauline Mendoza - 31 Jul 2017

fitness routine

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images

Having a regular fitness activity has benefits that extend beyond good health and great physique.

In an Inc. article, Dan Scalco writes that exercise plays a huge role in becoming a successful entrepreneur—and the benefits are not just for entrepreneurs; they’re for everyone in the workplace. Here’s a rundown of what you can reap from that regular fitness routine you’ve been working on, or struggling to pursue.

Exercise makes you feel more energized every day. When done on a consistent basis, it can increase your mental and physical energy levels each day. You will also get immediate positive changes in your mood. An experiment by behavioral economist George MacKerron reveals that regular exercise elicits a positive mood. And when people are happy, it will most likely get them grinding on to productivity.

It instills a productivity attitude. When you dedicate even a little part of your day for exercise, you’ll learn better time management skills. Because regular exercise increases focus and cognitive performance, people who are able to do this consistently have faster turnaround times when completing tasks or projects—a 15% boost in performance, to be exact, according to a study by health professor Jim McKenna of Leeds Metropolitan University.

It boosts confidence. Exercise is a powerful way of bringing about self-assurance and a strong mindset, as affirmed by research from Eastern Ontario Institute. Without confidence, how can you thrive as an entrepreneur in the highly competitive world of start-ups? And without a healthy self-esteem, how can you build a career and face the challenges in the workplace?

With these fitness routine benefits established, it’s time to get started. Let these steps guide you.

1. Find a role model and motivator

“Seeing people train hard and see improvements is what keeps me going. If they can do it, so can I,” says Mergynette Mercado, RND, clinical dietician at Aegle Wellness Center. For personal supplementation provider Mayumi Toribio-Penntoft, most of her fitness inspiration comes from the fitness-driven women on Instagram. She also shares that her husband is such a great motivator for her to act on her fitness goals.

In this world full of negativity, it’s a gift to be able to find inspiration through role models and motivators around us—whether in fitness, in the workplace, or other facets of life.

2. Know your why

“I want to be strong and healthy. That is my dominant concern and what inspires me to work out,” says actress, singer, and recording artist Yanah Laurel. “Especially for my line of work, being in theatre, staying fit and strong is important. I see fitness as a form of therapy and self-love; it’s great me time,” she adds.

Whatever your answers are to that why, it is essential to have those reasons so the goals and things to accomplish all make sense.

3. Just do it

This is the rawest way to get started with fitness. You just have to make that first step and do it—now.

Mercado asserts that staying fit while being busy with work and projects is quite a challenge, but it boils down to two choices: be in shape or stay the same. “At the end of the day, you are responsible for your own success or failure towards your health and fitness goal. Once you decide to make healthier food choices and exercise regularly, stay religiously committed. Set your goal. If your goal has been achieved, set another goal,” she says. Mercado also advises using a journal, apps, or any tool that you think can help you achieve your goals in fitness and in work. You can also look for a fitness buddy to keep each other motivated and be accountable.

“Everyone has 24 hours and I choose to spend at least 30 minutes prioritizing my health,” Toribio-Penntoft shares. “I always include it in my agenda for the day. I always tell myself, time is not the problem. It's laziness and lack of drive.”

Similarly for Laurel, you just have to make time for achieving your goals. “I manage my time by making time,” she says. “It is a choice to carve out a period in your day. I work out 4-5 times a week at 7 AM before I head to rehearsals and meetings.”

And when you finally start pushing yourself to just do it, Mercado has this piece of advice:

“Starting is easy; sustaining is a different story. You should see yourself doing these changes for the rest of your life and always aim for the better version of you. Even your future self will thank you for it.”