Whether you regularly workout or you’re just getting started, everyone has a struggle with being motivated to workout. Sometimes the workout begins before you even hit the gym or set up your exercise programme at home. Even the best intentions won’t be enough and the truth is not every day will be your best day. Sometimes it is best to listen to your body and have a day off, however, for those times when you just are not motivated, this post will hopefully give you some tips to give an extra boost to go do a workout.
Find what works for you
Slugging it out in the gym may be fantastic for some individuals, but for some short, at home workouts are far more effective. This will mean you need to do a bit of trial and error and really think about activities you enjoy. Due to the internet, there is an endless stream of videos that you can do at home, transforming your computer into your own personal trainer. However, this can also translate in the gym, you can find numerous apps and websites that will give you a guided programme in the gym.
The key here is to find something you love doing. If you like doing something, it will be much easier to motivated yourself to do it then if you really don’t enjoy it.
Sometimes a hectic life can really get on top of you. If you have to juggle work commitments, appointments and meetings with friends, it can be hard to find time to work out. You probably wouldn’t remember half of these things if you haven’t planned it, so plan in a work out too. If you schedule in a workout, when someone asks if you want to go out, you can look at your schedule and see if you can rearrange it for another time. This will also help you be more accountable when looking through your diary to see what tasks you have completed.
Following on from scheduling meetings with friends, become friends with your equipment. Individuals who get creative and tap into their natural motivations are more successful than those who try to find their inner enforcer. If you would never skip meeting up with a friend, name your treadmill or yoga mat, then plan a time to meet with them. When someone asks have you seen said friend, you feel great to say yes. It’s a silly method, but the creativity channels our inner motivations to social and be close to people.
Dress for it
Get into gear. If you’re sat on the sofa in your comfy clothes, five episodes into a series on Netflix, you’re not going to want to break away get exercising. Go and put your gym clothes on and you will be more inclined to work out. Also treat yourself to some good gear, if you’ve spent money on it, you will want to make it worth it.
Keep it in sight as well. If you have them next to the bed in the morning, as soon as you get out of bed the first thing you see will be your gear and you have exercise on your mind from the first minute of the day. If you then put equipment or pictures around the house, they work as cues for your brain and keeps exercising as a priority in your mind. When it is all you see around you and it is in your mind, you’re more likely to go do it and get it out the way.
Don’t go public
Previous research has demonstrated that social recognition makes us less likely to follow through with our intentions, therefore, if you’re planning on doing a workout, don’t feel like everyone needs to know first. Once you have done the workout, feel free to share it on all your social platforms. Sharing your progress and accomplishments will enable you to build a group of supporters that can help you feel satisfied to work out, but also you can work together to keep motivated and accountable.
Be mindful of your goals
Every individual is going to have a different goal. This could be a massive goal of dropping a large chunk of weight, or it can be as simple as wanting to walk up a flight of stairs at work without getting out of breath. If you set yourself small and achievable goals, each time you reach it you feel satisfied and feel more motivated to move onto your next goal.
Also, be mindful of your goals. After each workout, think about how you feel and how the workout has helped you to achieve your goals. You can either do this mentally or write it down for something to look at when you’re struggling to get motivated. If you remember how good you feel after a workout, then when you are feeling guilty from sitting on the sofa all day, you know that if you work out you have an instant mood booster. This is also great if you struggle with stress and anxiety, if after a workout you feel a bit more relieved.
Just get started
If you make a deal with yourself to say you will just do half of what you normally do, or you will just do a 4 minute HIIT workout. Once you get yourself started, you’re more than likely going to end up doing a lot more and your usual workout because all you needed was that boost to get started. But if you still don’t do much, don’t be disheartened because you still did something.
Get people involved
Sometimes going to the gym or a class can be a little intimidating. Get yourself a friend or two to head to the gym with you. This means you won’t be alone in the classes but also have someone to make sure you are going. You can share your goals and successes with each other as well which will continue to help you feel accountable and you can provide motivation for your friends too. You could even turn it into a friendly competition. Who loses the most weight it 6 weeks, or who does the most steps in a week, or who can do the most squat jumps. You can have a money stake or a deal that the loser buys coffees etc., you don’t even need rewards.
The takeaway message to get motivated is to find something you love, dress-up and show up and you will get yourself started. When you make it a habit, you will experience far less days of feeling unmotivated and rewards will feel so much better when you feel like you’ve earnt it.