The Secrets of Success: Take the 'Work' Out of Your Workouts

By , SparkPeople Blogger
What are the secrets to lasting weight-loss success? As America's most popular weight-loss website, we've learned a thing or two (and it's not a magic potion or pill).

When we were researching and writing our best-selling book, The Spark, we discovered 27 secrets of success that thousands of successful SparkPeople members have used to reach their goals, lose weight and keep it off. Some secrets—including these—are too good to keep to yourself.

We're sharing our 15 favorite secrets of success on the dailySpark from March 1-15.

Secret #4: Make exercise fun.
Successful members proactively took steps to keep exercise fun. A whopping 64% made it a point to try new and different things. How else did they make exercise fun?

67% tried outdoor activities, 62% listened to fun music, and nearly 60% purposefully added variety to their workout plans. Other things that kept exercise fun were doing competitive activities (races, charity walks) and taking active vacations.

I may sound like Captain Obvious for saying it, but you're more likely to stick with a workout plan when you actually enjoy it. In fact, you may even enjoy it so much that you look forward to your exercise time instead of dreading it. Wouldn't that be a nice change of pace?

I think everyone is capable of finding joy through movement and physical activity. If you don't believe me, you just haven't found the right exercise yet. One of my biggest pet peeves is seeing trainers who treat workouts like punishment or people who think they need to force themselves to do exercises that are boring, painful or downright torturous. Who wants that? If you're going to make exercise a part of your lifestyle, you have to like what you're doing—or at least not loathe it. I can tell you with complete honesty that I only do workouts that I think are fun. Period. If I don't enjoy myself, there is no way am I going to force myself through it. Why? Because I know I won't stick with it, not even for one day. Luckily, I discovered Pilates, Spinning, running and kettlebells—activities that I really love doing day after day. I don't force myself to swim or practice yoga, no matter how beneficial they are or how much others may like them, because they just don't do it for me. There are no "shoulds" in my workout plan—only "wants." If you can make it so that you want to exercise, nothing will stop you!

If you haven't found ways to make exercise fun yet, take heart. SparkPeople is here to help. Check out the following resources for some great tips and ideas that will help you see exercise in a whole new light. How about you: Is this one of your secrets to success? Tell us about your favorite workouts and how you keep them fun and interesting!

Did you miss a secret? Find all the rest of the series of 15 here (a new one is posted every day through March 15). If you want even proven weight-loss secrets, The Spark features 12 more, plus a 28-day weight loss program that really works! Learn More