Simple and Effective Ways to Motivate Yourself to Work Out
Workouts are great for us – they help us stay healthy, keep our weight in check, and stay in shape. Still, no matter how good exercise is for us, we still struggle to find motivation and actually go to the gym. We might feel guilty for not going afterward, but we always won’t find the strength to go at that moment. If you often struggle to stay motivated, we present you with a list of simple tricks that will help you stay on track with your workouts.
Remember your goals
It might be difficult to focus on long-term goals you had in mind months ago if you don’t remind yourself of them every now and then. You should think about what your goals are and write them down somewhere – on a piece of paper, on a post-it, or in your diary. When you feel like staying in bed is better than putting your running shoes on, read what you wrote down and it will give you strength to go out and chase your goals.
Use music as motivation
It’s been noted that music enhances athletic performance and people use music when they want to give their workout sessions an additional boost. Music takes our minds off the burning sensation in our muscles and fatigue during particularly tricky sessions. Motivating music can make us work harder, but it can also calm our thoughts. What is more, when you synchronize your movements with the rhythm, you will be able to work longer just to go ‘go through one more song.’ Make a playlist of music you find the most motivating and you will see that those challenging sessions can become a bit easier.
Consider your mood
It’s impossible to always be in the mood for exercise. There are days when we’re just too tired to go for a run or do some weightlifting, and that’s okay. The key is to base workouts on your mood and to pick exercises that will make you feel better. Sometimes an exhausting workout session is just what we need to boost our energy levels, but if you feel like you don’t have any energy, a relaxing stretching session may be a better choice. Alternate between stretching, cardio, and strength training because you will get the best results when you combine the three.
Invite a friend to join you
When you tell yourself that you must exercise because you’ve been a) lazy, b) eating a lot of junk food, or c) putting on weight, you might find it challenging to commit since your motivation comes from a negative instead from a positive place. If you include your best friend in your workout plan, you will find that sessions are much more enjoyable and you will look forward to them instead of dreading them. Help each other buy excellent fitness equipment, talk to each other before each session, and monitor each other’s progress – sometimes it takes another person to show you just how far you’ve come.
Follow a program
You will discover that it’s easier to stay on track when you have a strict schedule and a fitness program to follow. You might not train as if you’re preparing for a marathon (or you just might, it’s up to you), but you will realize how much easier it is to stay on track when you have a strict training schedule and workout program. You can use various fitness apps and gadgets to help you keep track of your sessions or even the number of steps you’ve taken during the day. Not only will this help you keep track of mileage, but you will see that you’ve accomplished something and feel better too.
Keeping your long-term goals in mind is great, but sometimes we need something to reward ourselves for all the hard work we’ve done up to that point. Make it a rule to treat yourself from time to time for a job well done – be it a record number of miles you’ve run, more weight on the bar, or ten more pushups than you did on the previous session. It doesn’t have to be a big treat, a sweet smoothie, a muffin, or an episode of your favorite TV show with a glass of wine will be great too.
It might be tempting to press that snooze button and get an extra hour of sleep instead of sweating at the gym. Skipping a workout session every now and then isn’t necessarily a bad thing as it will allow your body to recover, but if you’re doing it regularly, you will do more bad than good. Habits are difficult to build but easy to lose; working out might not be easy, but it’s incredibly rewarding to see the results after all the effort you’ve put in.
by Diana Smith
Diana Smith is a full time mom of two beautiful girls interested in health and alternative medicine. In her free time she enjoys exercising and preparing healthy meals for her family.