Regular exercise provides undeniable benefits, such as enhanced strength, flexibility, reduced disease risk, weight management, and improved brain health. For people with ADHD, exercise’s ability to improve impulse control and boost executive function are especially helpful for enhancing everyday life.
But while you know exercise is helpful for your physical and mental well-being, it’s often challenging to exercise consistently. Use these practical fitness tips for adults with ADHD to improve your engagement with exercise.
Do Activities That You Like
Just because exercise is good for you doesn’t mean it has to feel like an obligation. Don’t feel limited by expectations that others might have regarding exercise; keep workouts appealing and enjoyable by doing activities you like.
You can exercise at the gym, join a sports club, enroll in a dance class, or do aerobic exercises such as jogging or biking at the park. You may have to experiment to find activities you enjoy, but the right exercises will feel more motivating and rewarding than those that do not interest you.
Try Mind-Body Exercises
Mind-body exercises can be especially beneficial for people with ADHD because they combine physical movement with mental focus and controlled breathing. Mind-body exercises promote mental clarity and help to relieve stress, anxiety, and other negative emotions.
Pilates is a popular mind-body exercise method that increases core strength, flexibility, and sensory awareness. You can do traditional Pilates movements on a mat or unlock the benefits of Pilates with wooden stall bars if you want a more precise workout.
Set Realistic Goals: Don’t Demand Perfection
Another practical fitness tip for adults with ADHD is to set realistic goals and track your progress. The SMART framework is one popular method for goal setting, but you want to use what works for you. Your fitness goals should be specific, measurable, and realistic, and you should have a timeline for achieving them.
Perfect is the enemy of good, which means that demanding yourself to be perfect hinders you from improving incrementally. Although consistency is the key to making fitness part of your lifestyle, give yourself grace on off days. An accountability partner can motivate you to continue your exercise streak or get back in the saddle after you miss a day.
Engage in activities you enjoy, try mind-body exercises, and set realistic goals to get the most benefit out of exercise. These tips can help you create an exercise routine that works for your lifestyle.