Most of us are involved in dozens of projects, day after day until we go to bed. Adults tend to keep going until we are exhausted. One detail leads to another, and each year we get better at making detailed check lists which can be endless. Even our greatest sanctuary, the home, unleashes a continuing stream of upkeep items. Don't you long for “recess” period, during elementary school?

Actually, recess is a great concept for adults also. Even if it's only a 5-10 minute walk around the block or down the hall, there will be a vitality boost and usually a better attitude afterward. Studies show that the time spent in exercise results in greater productivity when we go back to work.

The best part is that when we decide to do this, at strategic intervals every day, is that we take charge over a significant aspect of our day. The commitment to exercise develops a sense of responsibility for maintaining a good energy level, a positive state of mind and better long-term health. It sure is better than just waiting for things happen.

Over the years I've heard from a number of walkers or runners who motivate themselves by having a co-worker or relative drive them a certain distance away from work or home. Their feet must go the distance and the workout is guaranteed. Here are other motivational tips:

  • The exercise buddy system. When two people make a commitment to help one another get active, they often feel a greater sense of commitment. Even when miles apart, the call before or during the workout is a great way to connect with a friend or relative, as each inspires the other.
  • Get a treadmill or other equipment for the home. Mothers are able to watch the kids while logging their miles. Dads can be around the family as they get in their after-work exercise.
  • Keep your exercise gear packed. Having walking/running shoes and clothes in a bag in your car allows you to change during your child's soccer practice and take a few laps around the field, etc.
  • Schedule your workout as an appointment that does not get changed. For sanity, this appointment may be the most important all day.
  • Join a health club, running group or walking organization. Many find motivation when they pay the membership, and place themselves in the midst of peers who are exercising.
  • Have a reward. I always look forward to sitting in my Human Touch massage chair as I enjoy the glow of completion.

Note: Over a million runners and walkers have attended Jeff Galloway clinics, running schools, wonderful retreats, training programs or read his books. To subscribe to his free newsletter and/or blog, visit

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GET MOTIVATED by participating in the origins of our sport (and western democracy)! Join the team at Phidippides Running and Greek-American Dean Karnazes and connect to the rich history of distance running with scenic views, landmarks, and a fun podcast.