How To Make Exercise Fun (Again)

Photo credit: Flickr / oakleyoriginals

Stuck in a workout rut? Been following the exact same routine for the last 12 months, or even more? The good news is that it’s pretty easy to figure out how to make exercise fun again. You may only need to tweak your routine a bit.

There’s bad news too. Boredom isn’t the only consequence of following the same routine for months on end. If you don’t regularly change your routine, you also stop getting stronger, losing fat and improving your endurance.

Here are my three tips on how to make exercise fun again.

#1: Set yourself a demanding fitness goal

Setting up a demanding fitness goal immediately makes your training more interesting. You start thinking more carefully about how you train and whether what you do is going to help you reach or goal or not. What exactly is needed for you to be able to do those 10 push ups | run that 5K in less than x minutes | do splits in three months?

#2: Introduce an element of competition

I’ve never been into competitive sports, so I was a bit surprised when noticed I have a competitive streak! My little sister decided to get fit about five months ago, and after that I’ve been a bit worried she will suddenly be in a better shape than I am.  That seems makes me want to push forward in my workouts.  (My sister doesn’t know I’m secretly competing with her…).

You can easily add a competitive element even to solo sports. You can record your workouts using some web-based application like and compete on who gets the most exercise per week or per month.  And nothing prevents you and your fitness buddies from setting up your diy fitness test to see who is the best.

#3: Variety is the spice of life

It’s easy to add variety to your workouts. I listed just a few of them: you can vary your pace, your workout intensity, length of the workout, the time of day you exercise, whether you train alone or in a team, at home or outdoors.

If you try it, you may be surprised at how a very simple change in your routine can perk up your experience. I noticed that first-hand when I decided to walk my favorite route counter-clockwise: the only that basically changed was the scenery, but the experience was suddently completely transformed.


Ultimately, it you find exercise boring it may simply be the case that you’ve chosen the wrong sport, are too serious about exercise or do it for the wrong reasons. Who says you can’t actually exercise just for the fun of it? I bet the boy in the picture goes sledding because he enjoys it, not because he wants to develop his cardiovascular endurance.

The saddest case was when I heard one blogger complaining how boring exercise is. The only sport she enjoyed was hola hooping, but that didn’t “count” because it wasn’t effective weight loss exercise!

P.S. Do you have any tips on how to make exercise fun?


  1. Satu

    I try and mix my exercise up a bit and do different classes each day. At the moment I’m doing 5 days a week of exercise (via classes at a work gym) and am enjoying them. I do worry, however, that my fitness isn’t increasing as it should so probably need to either push myself harder in those classes or try something else / different.


    • Satu says:

      Variety is the spice! I think you’re getting pretty much exercise at the moment. My “consumption” has been a bit haphazard because of the migraine.

  2. Marion says:

    Hi Satu! Sorry I haven’t been over here earlier. I haven’t been on any blogs for about a week.

    I make fitness fun by: 1) fitness buddies; 2) helping people learn weightlifting at the gym; 3) fun music I love on my iPod; 4) time for fitness exploration and experimenting; 5) working hard enough that I can do fun things at the gym. This is a great fitness topic because it really matters.

    🙂 Marion

    • Satu says:

      I love tip number 2: helping people learn weightlifting at the gym! 🙂

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